Christopher Thomas, Gleaner Writer
Schoolchildren from 11 St James communities got a back-to-school boost last Friday when the St James branch of the Peace Management Initiative (PMI) held its fourth annual school-supply donation event at its Church Street office in Montego Bay.
PMI representatives donated school bags with notebooks, pencils, and pens, valued at approximately J$250,000, to 200 children at the basic school, primary school, and high-school levels. Khaki shirts, belts, and bags of rice were also donated to the students.
The supplies, which were donated by PMI board members and members of Montego Bay's corporate community, were given to children from the Rose Mount, Hart Street, Mount Salem, Cambridge, Lilliput, Barrett Town, Ramble Hill, Belmont, Catadupa, and Bogue Hill communities.
Richard Keene, PMI vice-chairman for St James, said the PMI was please to be able to aid the children and their parents in their back-to-school preparations.
"I am so happy about this presentation of school bags and supplies to the children because what we are doing is, in fact, alleviating some of the challenges of the economic crisis within the communities by supplying the school supplies," said Keene.
"Some parents who would have to go and do some other things to get money, now have an opportunity to receive not only a bag, but a bag with books and pencils for the beginning of the school term," continued Keene. "I think it is a great move by the PMI, and I am really happy to be associated with this move."