New fun park opens in Claremont Heights
Rasbert Turner, Gleaner Writer
Residents of Claremont Heights Housing Scheme in St Catherine have been praised for their proactive approach to preserving the environmental value of their community.
The words of encouragement came from South West St Catherine Member of Parliament Everald Warmington during an address at the opening of the Green Fun Space park in the community on Thursday.
"The people of Claremont force you to listen. I am proud of their achievement in putting this park together," said Warmington, who is junior water and housing minister.
"This community has always been one of the cleaner ones around here, so I am proud of them this afternoon," he added.
Warmington said that at a time when persons were shying away from environmental friendly space, it was commendable that the residents have a space for their children to play.
The establishment of the park was a labour of love, as residents banded with the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica (EFJ) and the Jamaica International Insurance Company (JIIC) to implement the project.
According to deputy president of the Claremont Heights Citizens' Association, Randy Finnikin, the fun park was a long time coming.
"We in the community are very proud of our achievement in seeing the park becoming a reality," remarked Finnikin, who drew rousing applause as he made reference to a dust nuisance from which the housing scheme no longer suffers.
Further assistance sought
He said that after contact was made with the EFJ, and $1.2 million was secured for preliminary work, further assistance had to be sought from the JIIC.
The additional funds were used to purchase swings, tables and other recreational facilities in the fun park.
Assistant General Manager for the JIIC, Leona Remekie, said the insurance company was glad to jump on-board the park project.
"Putting a monetary value to the project is not our style. It was a great pleasure to assist and we will continue to help communities," Remekie told
Guest speaker Hugh Lawson, chief executive officer of the National Health Fund, also endorsed the development, saying the establishment of green spaces was an important investment in the mission to create healthy communities.