Wed | Aug 21, 2019

Disabilities group seeks support to buy sewing machine through crowd funding

Published:Sunday | July 8, 2018 | 12:17 PM
Karen Brown (left), president of the Jamaica Association for Persons with Physical Disabilities (JAPPD) showing one of the old sewing machines at the facility with Gareth Manning, president of the Rotary Club of Trafalgar New Heights recently.

The Jamaica Association for Persons with Physical Disabilities (JAPPD) has partnered with the Rotary Club of Trafalgar New Heights to raise funds to purchase an industrial sewing machine for its workshop.

Karen Brown, president of the JAPPD, said members of the association have been working to resurrect its once vibrant sewing workshop, located at the Sir John Golding Rehabilitation Centre in St Andrew.

The facility provides employment for physically disabled persons living at the centre and at the neighbouring Cheshire Village in Elletson Flats.

In its heyday, the workshop produced medical garmentsfor personnel at The University Hospital of the West Indies, the Jamaican flag and craft items. However, the sewing workshop declined following the death of Professor, Sir John Golding in 1996, and currently,barely operates from the dilapidated structure.

Brown said the partnership with the Rotary Club of Trafalgar New Heights has moved the facility to a level where it will be rehabilitated, and once again provide training for members of the association.

“We need training support to move forward,” Brown stated, “We are people with real lives. Therefore, we are happy that the Rotary Club did not simply give us a package; but, is working in concert with us, to provide skills training, to become self sustaining,” she said.

Gareth Manning, president of the Rotary Club of Trafalgar New Heights, said the service club decided to assist the organisation because it was in keeping with Rotary International’s areas of focus. He also noted that some of the members were survivors of poliomyelitis.

“Physically disabled persons tend to be forgotten by the rest of the society and their economic needs are oft times not met,” he pointed out.

“Therefore, through this partnership, we believe that the workshop, when fully operational, will create opportunities for training and employment.”

Manning highlighted that donations to the project can be made via ISupportJamaica, a crowdfunding platform, which is an initiative of The Jamaica National Group. The target is to raise US$1,000 to purchase the industrial machine.

“I’m grateful that we have a funding platform, such as ISupportJamaica, which gives others, who can’t be directly involved,the opportunity to contribute their donations via the platform,” he commented.

Phillip Lindsay, ISupportJamaica operations officer, at the Jamaica National Group, said donating to the initiative via the platform is simple and secure.

“Jamaicans, locally and overseas, along with friends of Jamaica, can provide financial support to micro-enterprises and not-for-profit entities, such as JAPPD,” Lindsay said.

Interested persons can donate to this initiative by visiting the ISupport platform at, click on theJAPPD project; and then click the “Fund Project” button. Donations can also be made via credit card through JN Live online banking; by visiting any branch of JN Bank, or JN MoneyShop; and through interbank transfers.

The Rotary Club of Trafalgar New Heights has been assisting the JAPPD since 2017 to refurbish its physical plant and reposition its products.