On Sunday November 3, 2013 the Ministry of Local Government & Community Development along with the Social Development Commission (SDC), will officially launch Local Government and Community Month 2013 under the theme: A Prosperous Economy Starts with My Community. The launch will take the form of a National Church Service which is to be held at the Portmore United Church in Bridgeport in honour of the late Mayor of Portmore, George Lee.
This is the second year that Local Government Month and Community Month are being observed as one occasion. In previous years the Social Development Commission (SDC), which was with other Ministries would celebrate Community Month at the same time that Local Government Month was being commemorated by the Ministry. With the SDC becoming an agency of the Ministry in 2012 it was apparent to all concerned that a synergy would be most fitting.
This year’s theme was deliberately selected as one of the Ministry’s strategic priorities is Local Economic Development which is currently being pursued and actively facilitated through the implementation of the Caribbean Local Economic Development Programme (CARILED). The Programme is to be implemented in 6 areas (5 parishes and 1 Municipality) through funding support provided by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, Canada (DFATD) – formerly CIDA. The theme also embraces and promotes the role of local government in facilitating community empowerment and self-reliance by harnessing the local resources, and accessing external resources to stimulate local commercial activities and economic growth.
Following the launch on Sunday the commemoration of Local Government and Community Month continues with major events including a Local Government & Community Awards Ceremony, Community Development Committee consultations, the hosting of the Youth Mayors by the Most Honourable Prime Minister, SDC Local Economic Development Projects in various communities, the launch of the Governance Thematic Working Group as well as Expositions including one being spearheaded the Board of Supervision Expo
Local Government & Community Month provides the opportunity to increase public awareness of Local Governance, as well as, highlight the role, function and work of the Local Authorities, the SDC, other affiliate Agencies and partners. It will also foster community, economic and social development activities while deepening the relationship with the the people. Consequently, all fourteen Local Authorities will be implementing programmes and activities to mark the month and to highlight the economic development projects and prospects in their jurisdiction.