Rescuing Jamaica’s Marginalized Boys Must be a Top Priority

by Derrick Scott

Washington, DC – Calling for “rescuing our boys” to be a major priority, Ambassador of Jamaica to the USA, Her Excellency Audrey P. Marks, shared her concern about the  challenge facing the Jamaican society with marginalization of many of our boys and their performance vis-à-vis our girls and their general welfare and development.

She made the case as she delivered her keynote address at the David “Wagga” Hunt Scholarship Fundraising Gala, Saturday, January 19, in Washington, DC.

Ambassador Marks also renewed the appeal for the Jamaican diaspora to support for the “Pledge2Build” campaign to raise funds for capital improvement of early childhood and primary institutions across Jamaica, by engaging the Diaspora in the United States, Canada and Great Britain.

“Pledge2Build” was launched as the official education legacy project for the celebration of the 55th Anniversary of Jamaica’s independence, in our quest to ensure that schools are safe, while creating stimulating learning environments.

Patron for Saturday’s gala, the Jamaican Ambassador pointed out that the David “Wagga” Hunt Initiative was an important vehicle through which the organisers had effectively joined forces with the leadership of Calabar and KC in molding young minds at both boys’ schools, for them “to become productive citizens.” Arguing that because “education is key to nation-building,” the Ambassador declared that investing in our nation’s youths will ensure that we provide the platform for our country’s advancement and for the attainment of our national and internationally agreed development goals.”

Ambassador Marks went on to praise the organisers for their diligence and concerted efforts to sustain the David “Wagga” Hunt Initiative, noting how it “is transforming the lives of 25 students from Calabar High and Kingston College, to the tune of J$10 million.” She hailed the “remarkable strides” made and the exponential growth over the last (7) seven years as “poignant examples of generosity and patriotism – traits for which Jamaicans living overseas are well known.”

The gala was also used to honour Reggae Girlz for making history by becoming the first Caribbean female football team to qualify for the World Cup. Turning to the members of the team on hand, Ambassador Marks said: “You have added to the lustre of Brand Jamaica, demonstrating that “we likkle but we tallawah.”

Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States of America, Audrey Marks presents the 2018 David “Wagga” Hunt Distinguished Award to Dr. Kevin Asher, the father of Chinyelu Asher a member of Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz

Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States of America, Audrey Marks presents the 2018 David “Wagga” Hunt Distinguished Award to Dr. Kevin Asher, the father of Chinyelu Asher a member of Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz, who were honoured at the 7th annual fundraising gala. Sharing in the occasion from left to right are members of the planning committee – Chairman of the Wagga Hunt committee Christopher Hunt, Michael McPherson, Garth Pottinger, Lloyd Anderson, and Lennox O’Connor ( Photo Derrick Scott)

The Ambassador praised Christopher Hunt and his organizing team the fundraiser, and encouraged everyone present to continue to support the David “Wagga” Hunt Initiative so that it can be equipped to execute its mandate.

David “Wagga” Hunt had coached Calabar to successive finals in the Manning Cup and Oliver Shield competitions. He also served inter alia as General Secretary of the Kingston and St. Andrew Football Association (KSAFA), coach of Jamaica’s National Under-17 football team and co-founder of Meadhaven United Football Club.

 

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