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Netball House attracts many sponsors

Published:Sunday | March 21, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Robert Bailey, Gleaner Writer

In an effort to raise over $15 million for the renovation of the Sunshine Girls' house, the Jamaica Netball Association (JNA) yesterday held an open house fair at the residence situated at 17 Widcombe Road, Kingston 6.

The house, dubbed 'Sunshine Chalet', or simply 'Netball House', will be used for, among other things, housing players from the various national programmes during training camps, seminars and meetings.

The five-bedroom house was handed over to the JNA by Prime Minister Bruce Golding in January.

"We are asking people to donate their time and their cash, to help us to make this home realise the potential that it has because it's a really a great gift," said Marva Bernard, president of the JNA. "Right now, we are looking at the roof and this is one of our biggest need at the moment."

Bernard added that Courts, Singer, Gas Pro, Supreme Ventures, 3M Jamaica and Berger Paints are some of the main sponsors which have contributed to the renovation of the house so far.

"The gifts have really been flowing in and individuals have been giving us kitchen and bathroom items, and I must say this is a wonderful day and I am over the moon with it," she said.

The president also said that it was going to cost her association $3 million per year for recurrent expenses, which includes maintenance of the property.

Bernard also disclosed that her association would be seeking funding to purchase another bus for the Sunshine Girls, which would be used in their recruitment drive for new players across the island."With this, we will able to do so much more by going around the island to find all the talented girls for netball, because transportation is a big cost for us," Bernard noted.

Last year, the JNA spent over $1 million for accommodation of its players from various squads, with the housing of the Under-21 squad, which was in camp for a significant period ahead of the World Youth Netball Championships in August.

'Right now we are looking at the roof and this is one of our biggest need at the moment.'