JIS: A total of 1,440 children from inner-city communities islandwide are to benefit from Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) clinics next fiscal year.

 

To be held in 26 schools/centres, the clinics will be carried out under the Jamaica Integrated Community Development Project.

 

The project has been allotted $700 million in the 2017/18 Estimates of Expenditure to carry out this task and other social services as well as infrastructural and civil works activities.

 

It aims to enhance access to basic urban infrastructure and services, and to contribute towards increased community safety in selected economically vulnerable and socially volatile inner-city communities.

 

Other social-intervention activities to be undertaken include the staging of 24 summer camps for 1,500 beneficiaries; enrolment of a total of 130 persons at HEART Trust/NTA to undertake Level 2 vocational skills training; and training of representatives from 18 community-based organisations in community-based contracting.

 

In terms of civil works, roads are to be rehabilitated; access to water supply and sanitation is to be improved in two communities; and zinc-fence removal and substitution are to be undertaken in one community.

 

The infrastructure activities to be carried out under the project include the clean-up of 30 communities; initiation of environmental programmes in 20 primary schools, including gardening and recycling subprojects; and training and engagement of 165 Environmental Wardens.

 

Up to December, 2016 under the project, 30 communities had been cleaned up; environmental programmes were initiated in 20 primary schools; solid-waste enclosures and skips had been constructed across 30 communities; 200 community persons were trained in vector control, to support the fight against the Zika virus; and 200 young persons were exposed to summer camps.

 

The project, which is slated to run from October 2014 to October 2020, is being funded by the Government of Jamaica and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development.