JAMAICA HOUSE, Kingston: The Local Government and Community Month’s Cross-Island Run was launched on Tuesday (October 10, 2017) during a brief ceremony at Jamaica House in Kingston.
The Cross-Island Run is a precursor to the month-long celebration observed each year during the month of November by the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development as well as its affiliated agencies and departments.
Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Honourable Desmond McKenzie, told the gathering that this year’s activities will focus on community development.
“The significance of what we are doing this year is to emphasise community development a lot more,” he explained. “We are not just there to clean drains and provide resources to the municipal corporations – community involvement, community building, community participation are critical components of the Ministry’s agenda.”
The runners were set off on their cross-island trek by Minister McKenzie and Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, who represented the Prime Minister.
“The Run, which I fully endorse, is really a multi-purpose approach and a novel idea of getting the message of Local Government to all areas of Jamaica. First it gets our people moving,” the Prime Minister’s message read.
“Second, it carries not only the message of Local Government, but also the notion that we should take care of recreational spaces in our communities so we can exercise. Thirdly, it involves our people. And finally and importantly the message of building better communities through local governance is shared. This is truly creating an environment for community involvement and participation.”