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Digicel Foundation Grants a Total of JM$30M in Environmentally Sustainable Projects

BANNER (1080 x 720 px) (6)Kingston, Jamaica – December 01, 2023: Digicel Foundation has awarded a total of over JM$30 million in grants to 13 community groups, as part of its ‘Good Energy Clean Environment’ Grant Campaign. The grants, geared towards fostering environmental sustainability, were handed over recently at the Digicel Headquarters, Downtown Kingston.

Digicel Foundation's Director of Strategic Planning and Community Development, Miguel ‘Steppa’ Williams shared that the campaign, launched in July 2023, garnered overwhelming support, with over 136 applications received.

“Of the 136 applications received throughout the grant call period, we shortlisted 13, which spread across 10 parishes. Of the 13 applications, five are longstanding partners operating sustainable projects over a seven to10-year period, eight are shortlisted for the first time, four are education-based, 7 are agriculture-based and one is a special needs-focused project,” Mr. Williams said.

Some of the projects that the Digicel Foundation will fund include solar, hydroponics, rainwater harvesting and recycling initiatives.

Mr. Williams expressed enthusiasm about the impact of the projects, stating, "We believe in the power of community-driven initiatives to bring about positive change. The diversity of the projects showcases the innovative spirit of our communities in addressing environmental challenges."

One of the grantees, the GraceKennedy Foundation, will be using the grant funding towards their Kingston Harbour Clean Up Project Educational Experience. Caroline Mahfood, CEO of the GraceKennedy Foundation shared, “We have an offloading site where the waste that comes from the gullies is sorted. Digicel Foundation is helping us to set up the site in a way that school children can visit and tour the site to see the pollution problem facing the Kingston Harbour, to see the technology currently in place to address it and discover how they can become a part of the solution.”

Meanwhile, the Jamaica Bauxite Institute (JBI) submitted two successful applications on behalf of the Alpart Nain and the Schwallenburgh Community Councils to enhance water harvesting and greenhouse farming.

Kemoy Lindsay, Director of Bauxite Lands at the JIB shared, “After the companies mind the bauxite, the pit that the bauxite comes from is retrofitted, shaped out and used as water catchment sites. Greenhouses are constructed around the peripheries of these pits. Solar energy is used to pump water from the water catchment to the greenhouses. What you have is a completely renewable and sustainable infrastructure system that benefits more than 200 farmers in bauxite communities.”

Another grant recipient, the Christiana Moravian Primary and Infant School, will use their funds to implement a rainwater harvesting system. The school’s head girl, Shadae Chambers, shared, “If we harvest water at our school, we will have enough to sustain us in case there is a drought and school will not need to be closed half day because there is no water.”

The total projected impact of ‘Good Energy Clean Environment’ projects is 6,415 individuals across the awarded communities.

Digicel Foundation | Jamaica

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