Private Sector Urged To Partner with JSIF

Photo: Mark Bell Managing Director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Mr. Omar Sweeney (left), accepts a certificate of appreciation from a member of the Rotary Club of Downtown Kingston, Ms. Kahmile Reid (right), following his presentation at a meeting of the Club on Wednesday, February 3, at the Hotel Four Seasons. President of the Club, Ms. Melanie Reece (centre), shares in the moment.

Story Highlights

  • Managing Director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Omar Sweeney, is urging representatives of the private sector to partner with the agency in its continued push for social and human capital development.
  • Mr. Sweeney said private sector organisations must play a more integral role in promoting the growth of potential and talent in youth, particularly in the Downtown Kingston area, which the club represents.
  • Mr. Sweeney said the JSIF has invested over $10 billion and impacted some 1,600 communities over the past 20 years, through social development projects.

Managing Director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Omar Sweeney, is urging representatives of the private sector to partner with the agency in its continued push for social and human capital development.

Addressing a meeting of the Rotary Club of Downtown Kingston on February 3, at the Hotel Four Seasons, Mr. Sweeney said private sector organisations must play a more integral role in promoting the growth of potential and talent in youth, particularly in the Downtown Kingston area, which the club represents.

“My call today is for the private sector to play more of a role at the base, and it’s important because this is how we will be able to grow the skills and grow the potential and the talent and ultimately grow the country,” he said.

Mr. Sweeney said the JSIF has invested over $10 billion and impacted some 1,600 communities over the past 20 years, through social development projects. He further noted that the Fund will be investing some $200 million in youth engagement projects for this year. This includes investment in an after-school Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) preparation programme for primary schools, vocational training for youth, internships and in mentoring small business owners.

He  said the investment will enable persons  to  see opportunities, and “we are  really  asking for the private sector to be aligned with the programme.”

“A small organisation like JSIF can’t be at all places at one time… Partners in the private sector can help us with their expertise and their knowledge and receive the benefit of targeting talent and potential that can in turn enable their business purposes and exchanges,” Mr. Sweeney added.

He further called on the Rotary Club and other similar groups to identify and join in eradicating environmental vulnerabilities that pose health risks. He urged the groups to take a stronger stand in educating the public by providing community groups with critical information about harmful practices.

“We must continue to advocate. You can be a powerful group, you can lobby, you can speak out and you can take action and you can educate. We at the JSIF are doing our best and we are looking for partners to help us on a sustained basis in transferring that knowledge and expertise which, on a transactional level, costs nothing,” the Managing Director said.

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