SHARING THE LOVE: Kitson Town Barber Saves Suicidal Woman
Five-minute feature on acts of kindness by local or overseas based non-government individuals and organisations that have benefitted Jamaicans.
Written and produced by the Radio Department of the Jamaica Information Service
News for Week of May 07, 2023
We are here to inspire, motivate and uplift.
Road agency continues rural repair projects
The National Works Agency (NWA) has completed rehabilitation of the Martha Brae to Holland road in Trelawny. This is according to Community Relations Officer at the NWA’s Western Office, Janel Ricketts, who said that the roadway was completed at a cost of $15 million.
She said the project forms part of a targeted approach to upgrade the 16-kilometre roadway between Falmouth and Springvale, pointing out that the Wakefield to Deeside section of that corridor has also been repaired.
“We are now in the process of exploring financing options for the rehabilitation of the remaining sections of the road from Falmouth to Springvale,” said Ms. Ricketts.
Repairs to the Marchmont to Retrieve roadway in eastern Westmoreland were also completed by the agency last month, at a cost of $17 million. Rehabilitation of the thoroughfare forms part of a targeted approach by the NWA to upgrade roadways across the island.
100 have applied to support small business financing
Thirteen microcredit institutions that provide financing to individuals and micro, small and medium-size enterprises (MSMEs) have been licensed since the implementation of the Microcredit Act, 2021.
“We have over 100 microcredit institutions that have applied to be licensed, and that’s a process that will take some time,” said Minister of Finance and the Public Service Dr. Nigel Clarke.
He was speaking at the launch of BlueStart Capital (Jamaica) Limited trading as Courts Ready Cash at 79-81A Slipe Road in Kingston. It is a member of the Unicomer Group and has been approved by the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) to operate in the country’s microfinance space.
The Microcredit Act seeks to, among other things, license microfinance institutions (MFIs) and bring them under the regulatory supervision of the BOJ; protect consumers by discouraging microcredit institutions from lending money at excessive interest rates; outlaw predatory lending practices, threats and intimidation; promote greater transparency through the disclosure of lending rates and other term loan products, as well as reduce the risk of the industry being used to facilitate money laundering.
It also allows a regulator (BOJ) to monitor the sector and ensure good business practices.
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Wanted: 100 persons to be trained as coders
The Universal Service Fund (USF) is seeking to fill 100 slots for the third phase of the Technology Advancement Programme (TAP) to cultivate a new generation of tech-savvy coders for the digital age.
USF’s Communication Officer, Timothy Simmonds, said the free-of-cost initiative is currently open to applicants between 18 and 29 years old, who will receive training in coding at the Stony Hill Heart Academy in St. Andrew, in partnership with Amber Group Limited.
Mr. Simmonds was addressing the launch of the Community Wi-Fi at Poppy Street in George’s Plain, Westmoreland, on Wednesday, May 4.
At the end of the year-long programme, those enrolled will receive certification and be better positioned to spearhead innovation and drive economic growth as well as to tackle the challenges of the country’s tech industry, according to Mr. Simmonds.
“[We are here] to deliver the best training and certification available in coding to our nation’s youth free of cost. I urge you to apply today,” he said.
Applications and qualification documents must be submitted online through the USF’s website, at www.usf.gov.jm.
The Internet at Poppy Street has a range of 800 feet and will allow some 200 residents to simultaneously access high-speed service with their smartphones or tablet devices.
Installation of the community Wi-Fi is part of USF’s mandate to increase Jamaicans’ access to information and communication tools to facilitate development, as well as increase the use of ICT devices across the country.
“The impact of this initiative on development cannot be overstated, as access to the Internet opens up opportunities for education, healthcare, and business,” Mr. Simmonds said.
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Get your applications in for small loans!
The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) has announced the opening of Cohort Three of its Innovation Grant Fund (IGF), a programme targeting medium-sized Jamaican companies.
The DBJ is also advising that there are two new areas of focus – climate resilience (mitigation and/or adaptation) and women-owned/led businesses.
The grant is valued at J$20 million and is to be used to assist in the development and commercialisation of innovative products, services, and processes to grow and expand the business.
The application process opened on April 21 and information on the process for submission of concept notes and full grant application may be found online at www.thinkbigee.com.
Integrity issues invite to members of the public
Individuals making disclosures to the Integrity Commission (IC) under the Protected Disclosures Act, 2011 are encouraged to do so in good faith and in the public’s interest.
This has come from the agency’s Senior Complaints Review Officer, Alecia Darby, who implores people providing information to do so responsibly. “It is not about making a complaint because you have a vendetta against someone. You want to ensure that you are doing so in good faith,” Ms. Darby said.
She was speaking during a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) ‘Think Tank’ at the agency’s head office in Kingston. Ms. Darby said people can provide information anonymously under the Integrity Commission Act, 2017.
“You don’t have to give your name. You don’t have to give any identifying information. What we do ask members of the public to do is to give us as much information to process the complaint that you have made,” she said.
Meanwhile, Senior Protected Disclosures Officer in the Commission’s Information and Complaints Division, Tanesha Fagan, said entities must establish procedures for dealing with disclosures. She noted that under the legislation, a person who makes a disclosure must be an employee or employer within the entity that they are making the disclosure about.
Ms. Fagan advised that the disclosure could relate to conduct that is likely to result in the breakdown of justice or damage to the environment or threaten the health or safety of a person.
Individuals can also make reports about conduct reflecting gross mismanagement, impropriety, or misconduct in the execution of activities involving the use of public funds.
We recruited the fraudster!
By Audrey Hinchcliffe
Companies facilitate the means, the mode, and the motives. I dare say it begins with the recruitment of these strangers who we invite into our business as team members. During my lengthy work and business life, I declared that there are two positions to which I would never aspire. In hospitals, never to be a Head Nurse, and in business, never to be a Human Resource Practitioner (HR).
Yet I have been in both positions, hence I can speak confidently to both. People make things happen; HR is the hub for people in organizations starting with the recruiting process. You have to rely on that human being not to knowingly misrepresent the truth about themselves and trying to get a refence is like the proverbial “pulling teeth”.