Tuesday 20 October, 2020

Digicel Foundation makes reading room a reality for Little Bay All-Age

 Little Bay community residents happily collect their children’s school work from principal Keron King.

Little Bay community residents happily collect their children’s school work from principal Keron King.

With a dream of improving literacy and literary skills for students at Little Bay Infant and All-Age School, principal, Keron King, has made a major step towards the goal through a $300,000 ‘Mek a Muckle’ grant from the Digicel Foundation.

The funds will go towards the completion of a reading room on the school premises for the benefit of 186 students. It will also serve the literacy needs of residents in the coastal community of Little Bay, Westmoreland.

The Digicel Foundation has been a long-standing proponent for literacy and early childhood education through its ongoing partnership with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information and Early Childhood Commission.

With the recent acquisition of a 40-foot container to house the facility, school administrators are working to retrofit the unit and make their reading room a reality. The school currently hosts a CXC programme for members of the community who mainly earn a living from fishing and tourism.

 A bright smile from the Little Bay Infant and All-Age School principal, Keron King, as he prepared to deliver school work to his students.

“I want to say a big thank you to Digicel Foundation for not taking any long deliberation to help Little Bay. I appreciate them for helping students and educational institutions across the length and breadth of the country. Their presence is felt in the rural areas and for that Digicel and its Foundation are to be commended,” said principal King.

He pointed out that the onset of COVID-19 has made the reading room even more needed: “Given the COVID situation, we want to ensure equity and accessibility are met for these students,” said King, who emphasised the importance of including technology in the reading room. “We want to purchase a printer that will assist those students who do not have access to the internet at home to come here, print, and take home reading and learning materials.”

This is a big step forward for principal King, who made headlines for riding his bike to deliver school work to students shortly after the pandemic struck in March.

CEO of the Digicel Foundation, Charmaine Daniels, commented, “Mr King exemplifies what we stand for at the Digicel Foundation - getting everyone involved to contribute what they can, because ‘every mickle mek a muckle’.” She added, “The Digicel Foundation is committed to safeguarding our students at the primary level and ensuring that they have access to quality education. Assisting the Little Bay Infant and All-Age School is one of the many ways we are ensuring that Jamaica's children do not get left behind during this pandemic.”

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