Wed | Apr 21, 2021

Fidelity Motors donates 50 tablets - Nissan dealership partners with customers to help make virtual learning more accessible

Published:Saturday | February 27, 2021 | 12:08 AM
City Kids Jamir Bailey (left) and Kimoya Graham receive tablet computers from Melissa Bennett (centre), sales and marketing manager at Fidelity Motors. Parent and teacher Kimone McKenzie looks on. Fidelity Motors handed over 50 tablet computers to the City
City Kids Jamir Bailey (left) and Kimoya Graham receive tablet computers from Melissa Bennett (centre), sales and marketing manager at Fidelity Motors. Parent and teacher Kimone McKenzie looks on. Fidelity Motors handed over 50 tablet computers to the City Kids Homeschool Programme based in downtown, Kingston. The tablets were courtesy of Smart Mobile Solutions Jamaica and the result of a holiday promotion which saw Fidelity donating a tablet on behalf of every customer who purchased a vehicle in December and January.

If you bought a vehicle from Fidelity Motors in December or January, your purchase helped to provide a child in need with a tablet for online learning.

During the Christmas season, the Nissan dealership chose to give back to their surrounding community in a way that would have a direct impact on the lives of some of the students directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic, and the resulting move to online schooling.

Through their Christmas promotion, they donated a tablet computer to the programme operating in the Southside community, on behalf of every customer that purchased a Nissan automobile from December 1 to January 30.

Fifty tablet computers courtesy of Smart Mobile Solutions Jamaica were handed over to the City Kids Homeschool Programme based in downtown Kingston. The official handover was held at the Fidelity Motors showroom and attended by City Life Ministries Programme Coordinator Pathelia Richards, along with two of the recipients of tablets, parents and customers.

Melissa Bennett, marketing and sales manager of Fidelity Motors, said she was pleased with the results of the partnership between their customers and the City Kids Homeschool Programme.

“In general, inner-city children already have such a hard time and the challenges brought on by COVID-19 have put them so much farther behind than the average child. So when we looked into it, we thought, how is it that we as a company can assist? That’s why we partnered with our customers, where for each car that was sold we would donate a tablet to an inner-city child through the City Kids Homeschool Programme. Based on the fact that we are located downtown and in the heart of the city, it was natural for us to look to our close environs to see how best we could assist and really make an impact, especially during this difficult time,” said Bennett.

DISRUPTION TO STRUCTURED LEARNING

Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the public education system, youth were adversely affected by the discontinuation of a structured learning environment. In an attempt to continue the educational curricula, schools provided classwork/worksheets and online portals for students, with an expectation that parents would give necessary oversight. Unfortunately, many parents in vulnerable communities across Kingston have not been able to handle these requests and requirements of the schools or capitalise on the resources provided online.

In September 2020, City Life Ministries responded by establishing the City Kids Homeschool Programme. This initiative focused on training parents in how to manage a home-learning environment, and provided them with basic resources needed to facilitate the new virtual-norm. Some resources include: tablets, snacks, dry erase boards, learning tables, and other types of teaching supplies.

“The extended challenges of COVID-19 on the educational system have increased the need for support of learning environments within the homes of our vulnerable communities. We, therefore, welcome the partnership of Fidelity Motors and the City Kids Homeschool Programme,“ said City Life Ministries’ Carrington Morgan.

The programme now operates in four communities: Parade Gardens, Tivoli Gardens, Waterhouse, and Fletchers Land. Approximately 50 parent-teachers and assistants have been trained, and over 125 children are active beneficiaries of the programme.

goodheart@gleanerjm.com