Sun | Sep 24, 2017

Kids benefit from new library in St Thomas

Published:Friday | July 22, 2016 | 7:00 AM

The recent opening of the Amity Hall Public Library in St Thomas was a significant moment for the community.

The library was donated by Pastor Martel Cole, a son of the community, now residing in the United States, and the members of his Mount of God Tabernacle in Maryland.

A number of residents and well-wishers were in attendance to show their support and express their appreciation.

Serving in the capacity of guest speaker at the event was another son of the community, Gilbert Scott, former permanent secretary in the Ministry of National Security.

In his message, Scott urged those present to go back to the fundamental values of their foreparents, values based on discipline and mutual respect for one another.

Sharing in the occasion, Dr Fenton Ferguson, member of parliament for Eastern St Thomas, and Nicholas Jones, chief operating officer of the Fred M. Jones Estates Limited, who lauded the work of Cole and cut the ribbon to officially open the library.

Jerome Romain of the National College Counselling Centre (NCCC) in Tennessee, United States, in his address, offered to make the resources of the centre available to the residents of Amity Hall.

The NCCC will offer online tuition-free courses that would contribute credits towards a degree at a partner college or university in the US.

In order for this to be successful, the centre would try to assist with possible funding for the outstanding credits required to complete the degree, along with books and other materials for those who may not be able to afford it.

The library houses an Internet cafÈ and a homework centre, which is a welcome addition that is expected to contribute significantly towards capacity building.

The library will serve approximately 200 persons in the community and another 300 from neighbouring communities and, especially, the kids of the Amity Hall Primary and Infant School.

It was built to help the kids so they can have a place to go after school and on the weekend to study and do homework.

The new facility is a landmark for the community because the nearest library is 20 miles away in Morant Bay.