Saturday 15 December, 2018

Mustard Seed boys’ home gifted with computer lab from IGT Jamaica

Debbie Green (left), IGT Jamaica General Manager and Brendan Hames, IGT Regional Director, share high fives with residents of Mustard Seed Communities – Matthew 25:40 at the official opening of the IGT After School Advantage Centre. (Photo: Marlon Reid)

Debbie Green (left), IGT Jamaica General Manager and Brendan Hames, IGT Regional Director, share high fives with residents of Mustard Seed Communities – Matthew 25:40 at the official opening of the IGT After School Advantage Centre. (Photo: Marlon Reid)

Boys living at Matthew 25:40, the Mustard Seed Communities’ centre for HIV/AIDS care, will now be able to enhance their learning capabilities through an Afterschool Advantage Centre, courtesy of IGT Jamaica.  

The new facility is fitted with six computers, pre-loaded with learning software and a printer and is expected to bring the 21 boys of high-school age living at the home, into the digital world.

It is the fifth Afterschool Advantage Centre that IGT has sponsored at a Mustard Seed Communities home and the 14th in Jamaica, with 20 overall computers.

The English-speaking Caribbean has 36 of the nearly 300 centres that IGT operates worldwide.

The partnership started in 2015 with Jerusalem Home in Spanish Town and has blossomed to reach Mary’s Child, St Anthony’s Home, Gift Of Hope Children’s Home and Sophie’s Place; all operated by the Mustard Seed Communities.

Established in 2002, Matthew 25:40 is one of three homes in Kingston serving abandoned and orphaned children living with HIV/AIDS under the Mustard Seed Communities' Dare To Care Programme.

The homes provide shelter and support for approximately 80 children and ensure that they live the best possible lives, while offering medical care, education and emotional and spiritual support.

IGT Jamaica Celebrates Mustard Seed Communities’ 40th Anniversary

Brendan Hames (left), IGT Regional Director, presents a plaque to Monsignor Gregory Ramkissoon, Founder of Mustard Seed Communities at the official opening of the IGT After School Advantage Centre at Mustard Seed Communities – Matthew 25:40. Click the slider for more photos.

According to Darcy Tulloch-Williams, Executive Director of Mustard Seed Communities, Jamaica, the Non-Government Organisation (NGO) has been able to fulfill its mandate of helping marginalised and vulnerable people, through partnerships like that formed with IGT.

Archbishop of Kingston, Kenneth Richards, who is also the Chairman of the Mustard Seed Communities, said that the organisation is a true representation of the Catholic Church’s apostolic of the Archdiocese of Kingston, which manifests through charitable work.

He said, “this is social teachings that flow from the gospel that the church seeks to implement because we truly acknowledge the dignity of persons in a very fundamental way that we try to make a difference.”

Archbishop of Kingston, Kenneth Richards (left) shares a word with IGT’s Regional Director, Brendan Hames at the official opening of the afterschool centre.

“And so the Catholic Church wherever it is established, seeks to make an impact on civilisation by transforming the lives of persons. And then as we are in the digital age, and so equipping persons to make their contribution and enabling them to make use of the digital technology, is very important,” Richards said.

According to IGT’s Regional Director, Brendan Hames, Mustard Seed Communities’ mission fits well with the philanthropic goals of the company.

He said, “Mustard Seed’s approach to loving and caring for those children who are the most vulnerable to society, fits in very well with IGT’s goal of reaching out to underprivileged youngsters, who may not have the advantage of access to technology, that can enhance their learning process.”

IGT’s General Manager for Jamaica, Debbie Green added, “IGT understands the particular needs of the young men at this facility. The Afterschool Advantage Centre not only seeks to equip at-risk children with the technological needs required to expand their educational horizons, but it also helps them to gain the confidence and satisfaction of understanding and mastering the evolving digital environment.

“The digital world is wide and wonderful and we hope that the students at Matthew 25:40 will not use these computers to prepare for exams, but as important as those exams are, but we hope that they will also see the opportunities to explore new horizons, find new interests and pursue them,” Green said.

The IGT After School Advantage Programme, is the major philanthropic initiative for IGT, formerly GTECH, which has been the online lottery technology provider to Supreme Ventures Limited since it began selling online draw games in 2001.

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