Fri | Sep 22, 2017

Digicel hands over gyms to STETHS, Edwin Allen

Published:Saturday | January 28, 2017 | 1:00 AM
Usain Bolt looks on while Anna-Lee Evans assists Peta-Gaye McKenzie to do bench presses at the Edwin Allen High School in Frankfield Clarendon for the official opening of the new gym for the winners of the Digicel Grand Prix.
Olympian and Digicel Brand Ambassador, Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce (centre) shows her team spirit along with members of the St Elizabeth Technical track and field team during the recent opening of their gym.
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Multiple Olympic gold medallists Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce were the main attractions as 2016 Digicel Grand Prix winners Edwin Allen High and St Elizabeth Technical (STETHS) opened their new gyms yesterday afternoon.

Both schools were given $1 million towards the development of their school gyms after their victories in the female and male sections of last year's Digicel Grand Prix.

At Edwin Allen's Frankfield-based campus, Bolt, who, like Fraser-Pryce, is a brand ambassador for the multimedia company, touched down in a helicopter, before heading to the school's auditorium, where he reminded the students to work hard and focus on their dreams.

The school had the gym outfitted with $1 million worth of new equipment as its reward for winning last year's Grand Prix and Bolt said that the project is very important to the development of the young talented athletes available to Jamaica.

"We have so much talent in Jamaica," the world's fastest man said. "If we got the help (from corporate Jamaica) that the likes of the United States, Great Britain, and all these other countries got, to support us and to help us push forward, I think we could turn out even more talent. I wish they would come on board and continue to help, not just track and field but every sport, to make it better so that Jamaica can strive."

 

EXCITED ABOUT DEVELOPMENT

 

Principal Everton Walters described the proceedings as "remarkable", and said that he is excited about the development.

"The fact that we have struggled along for many years in coming up with the requisite equipment for the programme, when Digicel came on board, I felt very excited, for here it will help to assist the programme to move from strength to strength," Walters said.

At STETHS, Fraser-Pryce credited Digicel's efforts towards grassroots development.

"I really feel good that Digicel has been having this Grand Prix series because a lot of high schools are now benefitting from it. They are contributing to the development of not only themselves but the legacy of Jamaica when it comes to track and field and I think it is a great accomplishment," said Fraser-Pryce.

"We are very proud of this moment," commented STETHS' principal Keith Wellington. "Digicel has been good to STETHS. We did the resurfacing of our playing field through the Digicel Foundation and now we have a gym courtesy of the Digicel Grand Prix. I must also commend all the persons who contributed to the development of the gym, the Member of Parliament Evon Redmand, the students who actually built the building and the Tourism Enhancement Fund. Today was a significant moment in our sports programme and we hope that in the near future we will reap the rewards from it."

- R.P.