Tue | Jun 18, 2019

Kiwanis Club of Downtown Kingston celebrates 50th anniversary

Published:Thursday | June 13, 2019 | 12:23 AM

This year the Kiwanis Club of Downtown Kingston celebrates 50 years of service to Jamaica and the citizens of the Corporate Area in particular. The celebrations will feature a banquet at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on June 17 at which four of its members will be recognised.

They include three charter members - Oliver Jones, charter president; Lloyd Distant, past president; and Alvin Lee, past vice president. Additionally, past vice president – Glenford (Glen) Christian will be recognised for his outstanding contribution to Jamaica, in the areas of pharmaceutical, commerce and industry as well as philanthropy.

Other activities slated for the anniversary year include the refurbishing of the Children’s Park and Play Ground on South Camp Road, which was established by the club in 1972. This activity started on Labour Day when it partnered with AC Hotel/Sandal Foundation, and community members to clean the park and paint a mural.

The club was the fourth Kiwanis Club formed in Jamaica and was chartered on June 9, 1969 with 38 members. It has undertaken many significant projects over the years, such as building and equipping two classrooms to accommodate mentally handicapped children; construction of a multi-purpose auditorium at Mona Rehabilitation Centre, refurbishing of the Central Sterile Supply Department, and sourcing and installation of a centralised sterilising unit at Bustamante Hospital for Children.

Its latest major project is a literacy improvement programme which is undertaken in selected schools in downtown Kingston, to improve the level of literacy among grades three-six students. This project has led to significant improvement in literacy at the schools. The project has been recognised as the most outstanding programme for 2017-2018 among Kiwanis clubs in the Eastern Canada and Caribbean District.