Minister of Tourism, Honourable Edmund Bartlett has lauded the efforts of the Spruce Up Jamaica “Pon Di Corna” programme for the implementation of another successful community project. The latest venture includes the refurbishing of a resource Room for the Rocky Valley Community Centre in Stony Hill. The room which is valued at $5.1 million dollars is envisioned to improve access to information for the constituents that form part of West Rural St. Andrew.
Speaking today at the ribbon cutting for the opening of the resource centre, Minister Bartlett cited the importance of the development of the human capital, particularly at the community level.
“Knowledge plays a crucial role in the development of society, and the benefits of this resource room; I am sure will extend beyond its walls and this community. Once we create avenues where information can be easily accessed, then we have started the process of building a well-rounded and learned people.”
The Spruce Up Programme, which was conceptualized by Minister Bartlett through the Ministry of Tourism seeks to create harmony between tourism and local communities and has been making a tremendous impact for over a decade.
“It is most inspirational and uplifting to be involved in upward movement and to join efforts with individuals and organizations who share the same vision. Today, we not only celebrate the opening of a new facility, but the impact we envision it will have on the residents. They are the greatest value to the community, and the chance to explore and improve their skills and talents with each other and the external environment tell us that a bright future is possible for all.”
He went on further to say that the tourism sector, similarly, has been paving the way for citizens to excel through skills training programmes and knowledge upgrade
“In our own tourism sector, we understand the value of the human resource. As such, we have engineered programmes geared at personal development to encourage growth within the sector. The growing interest in enrollment has led us to believe that our service providers and the citizens of Jamaica are also cognizant of the fact that skills training and professional development is worthwhile and impactful.”
The construction of the facility was spearheaded by the Tourism Product Development Company Limited, as the implementing agency of the Spruce Up Jamaica programme. Works included drywall, plumbing and electrical work as well the provision of computers and printers for which internet access has been provided through the Universal Service Fund.