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Jeffrey Town, a community of approximately 4,000 persons, located in the hills of St. Mary, will in a matter of six months have a new Type I Health Centre funded jointly by the Digicel Foundation and CHASE Fund to the tune of J$9.8 million.  Announcement was made today (Wednesday, April 1st) at an official ground breaking and community meeting at the site.  The Ministry of Health will provide financing for equipment and furniture.

Upon completion the clinic will provide services such as: antenatal, curative, post natal and child and adult nutrition services; chronic disease management and control; family planning; child health; HIV/AIDS management; cancer screening; early detection and referral of heath problems and immunization.

The project was first brought to the attention of Digicel Foundation by members of the community and in fulfillment of one of its mandate – to partner with organizations that are focused on community development – CHASE Fund was approached. 

“It was a natural fit” confirms Major General Robert Neish, Executive Director, Digicel Foundation.  “CHASE has had an excellent track; funding and managing similar projects and we were of the opinion that co-funding of this project will ensure that the citizens of Jeffrey Town were being provided with the very best”  Major Neish continues.

“We are excited about the partnership that now exists between Digicel Foundation and ourselves”, states W. Billy Heaven, Chief Executive Officer at CHASE.  “The needs are so great that we cannot do it on our own  We are hopeful that this partnership will send a signal to other public and private sector entities that this type of public/private sector collaboration is the only way that major improvements to the country’s infrastructure will be achieved at a faster pace and with greater significance”

During the latter part of 2008 CHASE Fund and Digicel Foundation signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on community based projects.  Under the MOU both organizations will pool resources to strengthen funding to effect major improvements to the social infrastructure of Jamaica at the community level.

The building of the Jeffrey Town Health Centre is the second project that both organizations have collaborated on.  Earlier this year grounds were broken at Tiny Tots Basic School in Lacovia St. Elizabeth. Work on this project is at a cost of J$10.9 million and will see the renovation of the existing one-room school house; the building of two additional classroom, kitchen and sick bay; bathroom facilities for students and teachers; a principal’s office; resource room and the fencing of the property. 

Digicel Foundation a non profit organization provides funds for community based tangible projects that support educational, social and cultural objectives. The Foundation which started in 2004 encourages partnerships with other funding agencies in order to achieve its sole purpose, which is to build communities and community spirit in Jamaica and across the region.

CHASE Fund under its mandate to support specific areas of national life is committed to delivering the highest quality of service in culture, health, arts, sports and early childhood education. The Fund was established by the Government in 2002 under the Ministry of Finance to support these areas of national life through proceeds from the operations of the gaming industry.  The proceeds are disbursed by CHASE.