SHARING THE LOVE: US Resident donates tablets

Five-minute feature on acts of kindness by local or overseas based non-government individuals and organisations that have benefitted Jamaicans.

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Written and produced by the Radio Department of the Jamaica Information Service

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News for Week of August 14, 2022
We are here to inspire, motivate and uplift.

‘Gov’t puts money where its mouth is’

The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) has announced two loan facilities valued at $700 million, to benefit entertainment and transport industry stakeholders whose livelihoods have been impacted by the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

A sum of $500 million is earmarked for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) under the Entertainment Restart Loan Facility, while $200 million has been provided for public passenger vehicle (PPV) operators.

The funds will be provided through the DBJ’s microfinance institutions and approved financial institutions.

Minister of Finance and the Public Service Dr. Nigel Clarke said that the “dedicated loan facility to persons who operate at all levels of the entertainment industry will allow those who are not yet back on their feet to have access to financing to go on the road again”.

Already, various individuals and entities that operate in entertainment have benefited from grant support to assist their recovery.

As it relates to the loan provision for transport operators, Dr. Clarke noted that “this can be used to make your business more attractive to customers”.

He said that the interventions “must be seen as the Government putting its money where its mouth is and stepping up and providing support”.

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Use your NHT refunds wisely, Jamaicans urged

National Housing Trust (NHT) contributors who are looking to own a home are being encouraged to use their refund to offset some of the costs associated with the process.

Corporate and Public Affairs Manager Dwayne Berbick said persons should consider using the repayment to assist with the deposit, valuation report or legal fees.

“Do not just spend it because it is available. Use it wisely,” he encouraged.

“Your refund is a tool to help with the homeownership process when that time comes. Do not consider [your contribution] as [just a] tax,” he added. Contributions become refundable every eight years.

However, Mr. Berbick explained that “individuals who are purchasing a home today… can reach out to us and request to have years not yet due to become available ahead of time. Persons can ask for up to five years of refunds”.

Currently, the Trust is refunding contribution made in 2014 or earlier. Contributors can submit refund applications online up to December 31 using the NHT’s mobile application (app) or via its website at www.nht.gov.jm.

The app is available for download at the App Store and Google Play Store.

The NHT has committed to provide affordable dwellings to citizens year on year. It aims to deliver 42,000 of the 70,000 housing solutions that are being targeted for development by the Government.

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RGD rebrands family history search service

The Registrar General’s Department (RGD) Genealogical Research facility has been rebranded to Outtamany Search as the agency repositions the service to reflect the ‘Out of Many One People’ motto.

Chief Executive Officer at the RGD, Charlton McFarlane, said that the move was taken after “careful consideration”, noting that the change will “reflect the authenticity of the RGD brand and embrace our roots in Jamaica”.

“Customers are guaranteed that the service requirements remain the same,” Mr. McFarlane said, adding that “the RGD is committed to offering efficient and timely delivery of the Outtamany Search”.

Outtamany Search will allow person to trace their family background, including historical information about the family lineage.

The Research can identify the origin of a family and discover members that are unknown. It can also provide factual evidence on the cause(s) of death through generations.

Persons interested in utilising the service can access the application forms and make payment by visiting the RGD website at www.rgd.gov.jm.

They can also contact the RGD at (876) 619-1260 or (876) 749-0550 or send an email to information@rgd.gov.jm for further information.

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Young farmers, fishers set to get help to grow

Six hundred young farmers and fishers across five parishes will benefit from support to bolster their enterprises and combat climate change under the pilot ‘Strengthening the Adaptive Capacity of Farmers and Fisherfolk in Jamaica’ project.

The initiative, which is being undertaken through a $21.5-million grant from Global Affairs Canada and the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, United Kingdom, was launched earlier this month.

It is a key activity under the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Enabling Gender-Responsive Disaster Recovery, Climate and Environmental Resilience in the Caribbean Project and will be implemented with support from the Jamaica 4-H Clubs.

The project is targeted at male and female youth farmers and fisherfolk in select communities in Clarendon, Westmoreland, Manchester, St. Elizabeth, and St. Thomas.

Over a six-month period, participants will receive training in business management and financial literacy, as well as business inputs to start and strengthen their farming, fisheries, and agro-processing enterprises.

Minister lauds Barita for its investment in education

Twenty-three scholarships and 10 bursaries, valued at $10 million, have been awarded to students at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels by the Barita Foundation.

The presentations were made during the Foundation’s inaugural scholarship awards ceremony earlier this month in Kingston.

Receiving scholarships seven students who sat the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) and are transitioning to high school; six students preparing for the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE); and four pursuing studies at the tertiary level.

In addition, four individuals were awarded the Rita Humphries-Lewin scholarship to pursue studies in early-childhood education. Two staff members of Barita were also awarded scholarships for further studies.

Minister of Education and Youth Fayval Williams said that education is fundamental to social development and growth. “We need to unleash the potential embedded in our children. There is no better tool for doing so than through education,” she said.

Commending Barita Foundation, Mrs. Williams said the Ministry greatly appreciates the support to the education sector, especially the promotion of equity within schools, through the provision of opportunity for students to pursue both their educational and extracurricular dreams.

Energy insecurity is real; major implications for global growth

By Karen Karniol-Tambour

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NEW YORK – We have entered a new period of energy insecurity, in which acute shortages of the kind seen this summer will remain a persistent risk.

The economic, political, and social consequences of this shift are already apparent. Energy shortages mean rationing, and if rationing is left to market forces, the outcome will be deeply regressive, with poorer people spending disproportionately larger shares of their incomes on basic needs such as heating and transportation.

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