Jamaica Impact (JAMPACT)Published Apr 1, 2003
What is JAMPACT?
Jamaica Impact Inc. ("JAMPACT") is a certified 501(C) 3 non-profit organization consisting of a diverse group of young Jamaican professionals, students and friends of Jamaica. Our philosophy is to use our collective energies, intelligence and resources as a catalyst for progress in Jamaica.
What is JAMPACT's Mission?
Our main objective is to make positive contributions towards the improvement of social and economic conditions in Jamaica.
Our slogan reflects our commitment to creating change in Jamaica. JAMPACT works towards achieving it's mission in two distinct ways, through:
Contribution to the policy debate on economic growth and education.
Tangible contributions to needy organizations in Jamaica.
Our key accomplishments to date include:
- Successful conferences and panel discussions on issues of national importance.
- Substantial financial contributions to educational and charitable institutions, helping to improve educational opportunities and quality of life for Jamaicans.
- Stimulating involvement in civic life among our young people.
In keeping with our goal of stimulating constructive dialogue on development, JAMPACT has hosted three major conferences to date:
• JAMPACT's 3rd Annual Conference looked at issues surrounding "Challenges To Nation Building: Values, Environment And Economy".
Held June 2002, the main features of the Conference were the two panel discussions and the keynote presentation during the luncheon. The first panel discussion "Rebuilding Our Values & Attitudes", examined the socio-economic factors that influence the values & attitudes of Jamaicans and some of the steps necessary to preserve the principled Jamaican values that we were taught as children. The second panel discussion, "Enhancing Jamaica's Tourism Product", focused on using culture and community tourism to diversify and enrich Jamaica's tourist product. The event stimulated much discussion among participants and saw heated debate in both panel discussions, as participants made their contributions towards finding solutions for some of the challenges currently facing Jamaica.
The conference attracted approximately 100 participants and several distinguished guests, including Consul General of Jamaica to New York, Dr. the Hon. Basil Bryan and Keynote Speaker, Dr. The Hon. Vin Lawrence, Chairman of the Urban Development Corporation.
•"Turning The Tide: Perspectives On Reclaiming Jamaica" Jampact 2nd Annual Conference.
In May 2001, representatives of Jamaica's economic, political, academic, cultural and religious sectors came together to discuss "Turning the Tide: Perspectives on Reclaiming Jamaica". The event featured a keynote address by Hon. Barbara Gloudon, co-host of Jamaica's leading public affairs talk show "Hotline", on the topic of pride and nationalism, which was met with resounding applause. Other highlights included a roundtable on Jamaica's future entitled, "Jamaica 2010: Visions For The Future". This discussion featured a diverse group of speakers representing leadership from all walks of life: dancehall artist Bounty Killer; Dr. Peter-John Gordon, Planning Institute of Jamaica; Sandra Glasgow, Entrepreneurial Center, UTECH; Dr. David Panton, Jamaica Labour Party; Basil Waite, People's National Party and Reverend Dennis Dillon, Christian Time.
The morning discussion "Urban Renewal: A Partnership for Revitalization", looked at how the public and private sectors can work together to improve and reinvigorate Jamaica's cities. Panelists included Howard Hamilton, Jamaica's Public Defender; Victor Cummings, KSAC; Onika Miller, Ministry of Local Government and Menelik Alleyne, Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, who shared his perspective on Harlem as an example of successful urban renewal.
• "Creating an Economic Renaissance in Jamaica": This successful conference, held in May 2000, attracted over 125 participants and stimulated debate on investing in and returning to Jamaica. The Keynote Speaker Senator Douglas Orane, Chairman & CEO Grace Kennedy & Co., addressed the enormous opportunity for Jamaican culture and products overseas. Other panelists included Hon. Anthony Hylton, Minister of Foreign Trade, Jamaica; Dr. Nigel Clarke, Director, Caribbean Investment Fund; Claudette Chin, Vice President, JAMPRO; Donna Duncan, Managing Director, Jamaica Money Market Brokers and several Jamaican entrepreneurs.
JAMPACT has hosted a series of panel discussions to keep the community informed on current issues, including the following:
• The Changing Immigration Laws in the United States - Irwine Clare and Winston Tucker of Caribbean Immigrant Services gave valuable insight into how these changes will affect Jamaicans in the future. Crime, Poverty and The Financial Challenges in Jamaica - Professors Norman Girvan, University of the West Indies and Donald Robotham, City University of New York spoke of Jamaica's struggles over the last twenty years and the consensus approach needed to meet the challenges ahead.
• The Effects of Globalization On The Caribbean - joint panel discussion with HC/QC, a Barbadian alumni association focusing on the cultural and technological changes necessary to harness the global economy.
With over $40,000 donated in just 3 years, our charitable activities support JAMPACT's mission by marshaling resources internationally to serve the needs of Jamaican organizations with proven results in improving quality of life and education in Jamaica.
• JAMPACT Grants: Over $14,000US raised in the last two years for JAMPACT grants to Jamaican charities.
Since our inception in 1998, community action has been an integral part of JAMPACT's mission. Using funds from our annual raffle, each year JAMPACT evaluates and awards grants to Jamaican charities that are in alignment with our mission of promoting progress through education. To formalize our donation process and advance our goal of supporting charities directly impacting the Jamaican community, JAMPACT's fundraising committee established a grant-giving process and invites proposals from education and social development-related Jamaican non-profit organizations. We focus on supporting activities that make a contribution in one of the following key areas:
- Expanding literacy
- Improving computer and Internet access in schools
- Teacher training
- Improvement of educational facilities and infrastructure & character and leadership development
- Development of conflict resolution skills
• $20,000US in Scholarship Funding: Partnering with a private donor, JAMPACT awarded scholarships valued at $20,000US, supporting nine (9) student teachers in the joint Shortwood Teachers College/University of South Florida Master's in Early Childhood Education Program.
• JAMPACT and Friends Maxfield Park Fundraiser & Auction: Raised over $4000US, which was donated to the orphanage which houses approximately 225 children and help supply them with books and clothes.
• Hospital Cash Donation: To the St. Thomas Infirmary in Jamaica.
• Basic School Adoption: Ongoing financial assistance is provided to the Mount Olive, Crescent Road, St. Stephens and Coles Basic Schools in Kingston, Jamaica.
• Christmas Toy Drives & Treats: Held annually since 1999, the treats provide gifts and a Christmas party for students at our adopted basic schools as well as a wonderful opportunity for our members to interact with the students.