Jamaica-born Elaine Bryan, counsellor of the year for Atlanta, Georgia, and real-estate broker and a board member of Leadership Sandy Springs, is pledging to play her part in the promotion of Jamaica overseas. She made the promise during a meeting with Lisa Hanna, minister of youth and culture, during a recent trip to Jamaica.
Mrs Bryan said that, in her position in Atlanta, she was strategically positioned to highlight the positives about Jamaica, and expressed a willingness to work with the ministry in that regard. She said Atlanta is a nexus for capital as some of the country's largest corporate entities are located there. She said it would be a good idea to introduce Jamaica to Atlanta through a series of meetings and concerts as the nation celebrates 50 years and beyond.
"We would be willing to assist in that regard as, right now, what's missing for us is access to information about many of the initiatives being undertaken by government and others in Jamaica," said Greg Bryan, who is an information technology specialist in Georgia. The Bryans further outlined that getting the full weight of Jamaican backing behind efforts to help the island would be useful.
Hanna requested a strategic plan for the Bryans' way forward so that the ministry would be better able to assist their efforts, and she also outlined her plans for the ministry, stating that they were in keeping with the goals of the Vision 2030 plan for Jamaica. Among her efforts to create a model ministry are:
Auditing children's homes and moving to a stage where children and parents are counselled, rather than separating them.
Encouraging volunteerism an using the National Youth Service to instil values, discipline and a way of orienting youth for the world of business.
Ensuring that a cultural policy is ready this year and it is one that will show Jamaica how to monetise culture globally so that everyone can see the possibilities of brand Jamaica. Part of that plan will have sites linking Jamaica globally so that others in the marketplace can see what we do.
Also present at the meeting were: Robert Miller, permanent secretary; Sydney Bartley, Carmen Miller and Richard Lumsden.
- Barbara Ellington