Sat | Apr 21, 2018

In support of young mothers

Published:Friday | February 23, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Diane Walker (right), human resources manager, and Lisa-Marie Brown (second right), marketing manager at at International Game Technology (IGT) present a care package for young mothers to Darcy Tulloch-Williams (left), executive director of Mustard Seed Communities and Nadia Williams, administrator of St Anthony’s/Mary’s Child Centre. 

 

International Game Technology (IGT) continues to support Jamaicans in need by donating care packages for young mothers at four women's centres and the Mustard Seed Communities' residential home for teen mothers in crisis, Mary's Child.

The donations form part of the ongoing support offered by IGT's After School Advantage Programme, which provides access to computers and information technology training to non-profit and non-governmental institu-tions serving disadvantaged youth.

Gay Williams, director of the Women's Centre Foundation in Kingston, noted that the care packages were received on behalf of four other centres. A total of 108 young women at women's centres in St Ann's Bay, Mandeville, Spanish Town and Savanna-la-Mar will receive baby care items, including clothing, toiletries and diapers.

"These items are greatly appreciated. The girls especially need items for their young babies, so these gift baskets were especially welcome," Williams said.

The Women's Centre Foundation of Jamaica, established in 1978, focuses on providing education and training opportunities for adolescent mothers, in addition to offering counselling and guidance on preventing further pregnancies for the young women, their partners and families.

IGT Jamaica General Manager Debbie Green lauded the institutions for the excellent work: "We are extremely happy that we've been able to partner with these two outstanding Jamaican organisations that provide invaluable support to young ladies," Green said.

"As part of our commitment to these organisations that are a part of our After School Advantage Programme family, we're delighted that we were able to provide these care packages," she added.

Darcy Tulloch-Williams, executive director of Mustard Seed Communities in Jamaica, expressed her gratitude for the baskets for newborn babies. Mary's Child is currently home to 17 young women (between the ages of 12 and 18 years) and 13 babies - their first-born. They stay there for an average of nine to 10 months.

"These young mothers have nowhere to go. They are in need of care and protection. We help them to get their lives back through continuing education or training," Tulloch-Williams said.

"These were very sensitive gifts. There is no doubt that IGT has brought gifts of love and caring to these young women and their small children, as they seek to rebuild their lives," Tulloch-Williams said.