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Home beams with Buju's gift

Monday, February 22, 2021

SUNBEAM Boys Home in St Catherine is the proud recipient of a commercially viable poultry/egg layer business, courtesy of reggae singjay Buju Banton and his foundation. The project was completed last Sunday.

Desmond Whitely, administrator at Sunbeam Boys Home, said he was pleased with the gesture.

“Mr Myrie and the foundation our sincere gratitude for this gift. We see this as the most significant contribution by any single individual and its impact on the development of Sunbeam. The approach taken by the Buju Banton Foundation to focus and invest in the long-term development of the wards is the best way to attain sustainable life-changing impact; especially, for young men. It is indeed easier to build boys than to mend men. The foundation's contribution is building the boys of Sunbeam and to a larger extent the men of Jamaica,” said Whitely.

According to Rosemary Duncan, director at Buju Banton Foundation, the home received 500 layer birds and a state-of-art chicken coup valued at $3 million.

In July 2020, upon being announced winner of the Jamaica Festival Song Competition, Buju Banton committed to donate his $3-million purse prize to the St Catherine-based home. After discussions with them, they said they wanted to undertake a poultry operation.

“A marketing officer has been employed to assist with promotion, sales and product distribution. The income generated will be directly reinvested into facility to provide for its residents. They, along with staff, will obtain ongoing, theoretical and practical training in agriculture and management, to ensure the durability of this project,” Duncan added.

Established in January 2019, Buju Banton Foundation continues in its mission to “give help and hope” to vulnerable boys. The foundation awarded full scholarship to Tajay Bailey at Denham Town High School. Food supplies, school stationery, shoes and skills training workshops among the resources gifted to youths.

Buju Banton, given name is Mark Myrie, began deejaying at age 13 with local sound systems in his Whitehall Avenue hometown. Some of his notable projects include Before The Dawn (2009) which earned him a Grammy for Best Reggae Album, Voice of Jamaica (1993), 'Til Shiloh (1995) and Inna Heights (1995).