VIDEO: Canada celebrates volunteers in Jamaica
Canadian volunteers in Jamaica - offering a variety of services within government, the private sector and non-governmental organisations in the island - were lauded recently at a reception hosted at the Canadian High Commission in Kingston, as part of Canada’s International Development Week.
Twenty-nine Canadian volunteers and 10 Canadian youth interns are contributing to Jamaica in key areas such as justice reform, gender affairs, climate change, youth education programmes and development. The 10 youth interns are here as part of the International Internship Program (IYIP) carried out by the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Strategy (YES).
The programme offers young Canadian post-secondary graduates the opportunity to gain professional experience through international work. They have been placed as assistant teachers at Ardenne, St Jago, Pembroke Hall High and Knox College in the subjects of Mathematics, Science, Agriculture, Climate Change and Gender Studies.
High Commissioner of Canada, Laurie Peters, noted that the contribution of Canadian Volunteers in Jamaica ‘is priceless.
“I have no doubt that your work will strengthen, and is strengthening local organisations, and that you are affecting systems in a positive, meaningful and lasting way,” Peters said.
International Development Week provided an opportunity for the nation to highlight the positive difference its programmes make worldwide.
Julian Robinson, Opposition Spokesman on Science and Technology said he knew of the impact being made by the volunteers in many communities and with many individuals across the country.
“To the extent that that they assist in improving service delivery, making processes more efficient, we are eternally grateful,” he said
The group also heard from Ardenne High School principal Nadine Malloy, Chantel Guthrie, programme advisor at MultiCare Foundation and counsellor and head of development cooperation at the High Commission, Walter Bernyck, who all spoke to the huge difference made by the volunteers during their stay.