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JAMAICA: Early-Childhood Brain Builders Initiative Receives US$70,000



#Kingston, November 1, 2019 – Jamaica – The Ministry of Education, Youth and Information’s (MOEYI) Brain Builders Centres (BBC) initiative has been bolstered with the acquisition of a US$70,000 Japan-funded Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) technical cooperation grant.                        

This was disclosed by Programmes Manager for the Education System Transformation Programme (ESTP). Daynea Facey, during a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank at the agency’s head office in Kingston on Tuesday (October 29).  She said the grant is being used to provide stimulation resources for BBCs in a wide range of early-childhood institutions. These include infant and basic schools, day-care centres, and crèches.              

Mrs. Facey indicated that 10 early-childhood institutions across the Ministry’s Regions are already benefiting to this end, adding that caregivers are being trained in, among other things, how best to utilise the resources.

These institutions are Small Fry Nursery and Learning Centre, and Vouch Nursery and Pre-School (Region 1); Tranquility Primary and Infant School (Region 2); Chester Infant School (Region 3); Bright Minds Nursery (Region 4); Mandeville Infant School (Region 5); and Elim Early Childhood Development Centre, Genesis Daycare Centre, Bournes Little Angel Nursery and Pre-school, and Prime Time Early Childhood Institution (Region 6).

In May, the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), which collaborates with the Ministry in the BBCs’ implementation, hosted a professional development programme, which targeted 1,000 caregivers working in centres, and those who work generally in early-childhood institutions (ECIs). 

According to Mrs. Facey, the participants got the opportunity to engage in sessions exploring ways in which children can be stimulated and appropriate activities that can be incorporated.

“Research has shown that [for the first 1,000 days of a child’s life] from conception to age two, there are specific interventions that children need to have the best start in life,” she pointed out.

Meanwhile, Sector Planner at the ECC, Paula Shaw, who also addressed the Think Tank, said the BBCs concept is a pivotal component of the Early Stimulation Strategy.

The strategy aims to increase the quality of the early-stimulation educational experiences in ECI-based programmes serving children up to age three; implement a standardised parenting programme model for families accessing primary healthcare and early-childhood development services; and establish opportunities for educational stimulation and parenting experiences.

Contact: Judith A. Hunter

Release: JIS

Photo Caption: Programme Manager, Education System Transformation Programme (ESTP), Daynea Facey, addressing a Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank, on Tuesday (October 29).

Yhomo Hutchinson Photo

Caribbean News

Rich Nations told to pay for Climate Change, Mia Mottley bring another charged speech to World Leaders



By Shanieka Smith

Features Writer


#Barbados, June 25, 2022 – Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, unapologetically laid the blame for the climate crisis on wealthy nations.  She said it is long past time for them to compensate countries undergoing the effects of climate change.  Motley expressed her thoughts and made the request in New York, where she joined a panel on sustainable development at the Global Citizen NOW summit with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Bill Nye.

“We’ve been carrying the costs on our balance sheet of your behaviour…”We’re not asking for the world.  We’re saying:  Look, put some money down and help us,” she said.

Barbados is battling rising sea levels, which threaten the water supply and encroach on coastal communities.  The World Health Organization has also warned that sea-level rise and changing weather could put immense pressure on freshwater resources.  However, this has not been a result of Barbados, which accounted for less than 0.01 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions in 2020.

Mottley expressed that the reason for the issues of climate change is the G20 nations, including the US, UK, China, Russia and the EU.  The countries that have released the vast majority of the emissions heating the planet.

“That’s what”s put us in this position,” she said.

To emphasize the effects of climate change on the island, she added, “Can you imagine going to a restaurant next to a place full of sargassum seaweed smelling?”  “You’re not gonna go!”

Meanwhile, the heavy polluters are better equipped to deal with the consequences of climate change, and smaller developing nations in the Caribbean are forced to battle climate extremes with very few resources.

“It would be not so bad if we had 25, 30 years to adapt.  Instead, we’ve got 12-13 years, according to everyone,” she said.  This is approximately 144 months.

Motley said that mitigating the issue is not simple and that it comes with obstacles like Covid-19 and Russia-Ukraine. She said, however, that we have to “push past the pain.”

She added, “the issue is, will we get there fast enough to save those of us on the front line?”

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Caribbean News

138 illegals add to the over 900 migrants captured by TCI Joint Forces




#TurksandCaicos, June 25, 2022 – RTCIPF Marine Operations Centre and partners continue to work together to protect our borders and keep TCI secure.

During the evening of Wednesday 22nd June 2022 the RTCIPF Marine Operations Centre identified a target of interest and immediately started to track the vessel around 5 miles North West of Providenciales travelling at around 7 knots.

The operator immediately updated colleagues within the Royal Turks and Caicos Marine Branch who made their way to the location and intercepted a vessel containing irregular migrants. Following a delicate, coordinated operation with the necessary stabilization of the vessel which was unsafe, severely overcrowded and the occupants were without life vests, the RTCIPF Marine Unit was joined by a second RTCIPF Marine crew and a third vessel crewed with TCI Regiment to support the delicate operation.

The vessel was carefully offloaded at sea to ensure the safety of the occupants and then the boat was towed to South Dock where it arrived around 4:45am with a total of 138 persons, 98 males and 40 female including 1 juvenile, who were then taken into custody by the Immigration Department. One male needed immediate medical attention in relation to a leg injury sustained.

Superintendent Martyn Ball said, “Again working with partners we have safely intercepted another vessel that was desperately overcrowded, unsafe and risked the lives of those on board. It continues to demonstrate the professionalism and dedication of the RTCIPF Marine Unit, working together with colleagues in the Marine Operations Centre, TCI Regiment, TCI Immigration and Health to save lives and keep our borders here in the Turks and Caicos Islands safe.

In the last couple of months over 900 individuals on 9 dangerous and unseaworthy vessels have been intercepted here in the TCI.

I would appeal to anyone if you have any information relating to such activity that you call CrimeStoppers free and anonymously on 1-800-8477, not only will you be saving lives but also supporting our national security here in the Turks and Caicos Islands.”



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Caribbean News

International joint forces seize $99 Million in Cocaine in Caribbean Sea



By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer


The US Coast Guard, and ships from the Netherlands made drug busts in the Caribbean Sea over the last few weeks resulting in a cumulative seizure of 5,237 pounds of cocaine.  The Coast Guard says the illegal narcotics which were offloaded at Base Miami Beach last Friday value $99 million.

The drugs were seized in the international waters of the Caribbean Sea by crews from: Coast Guard Cutter Donald Horsley, His Netherlands Majesty’s Ship Friesland, His Netherlands Majesty’s Ship Groningen.

Coast Guard Commanding officer of the Thetis, which transferred the drugs to the base in Miami, Justin Nadolny praised the partnership between themselves and the Netherlands which led to the massive seizure.

“Interdicting drug traffickers on the open ocean is challenging work and every interdiction is complex and unique,” he said. “This offload is a testament to the teamwork and devotion of every crew assigned to carry out this mission, and it showcases the strength of the valuable international partnerships united to combat transnational organized crime.  The fight against drug cartels in the Caribbean Sea requires unity of effort in all phases from detection, monitoring, and interdictions, to criminal prosecutions by international partners and U.S. Attorneys’ Offices in districts across the nation.”
The Turks and Caicos also have an agreement with the US Coast Guard signed in recent months which allows for tighter partnerships between the two countries (and the Bahamas) in the fight against illegal migration and drug trafficking in the county’s waters.

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