Western Jamaica ideal sports tourism destination, says Neita Headley

Western Jamaica ideal sports tourism destination, says Neita Headley

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

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ST JAMES, Jamaica – Minister without portfolio with responsibility for Sport in the Office of the Prime Minister, Natalie Neita Headley, has said that Western Jamaica is well positioned as a prime destination for sports tourism.

Westmoreland, St James and Hanover being situated in the nation’s tourism belt, "offers the opportunity for you to develop your football, not just as a sport, a community activity or a great outlet for youthful energy, but also as a potential big money earner in sports tourism", Neita Headley noted.

She was addressing the 2014/15 awards presentation of the Westmoreland Football Association held on March 1, at Sandals Whitehouse Resort.

In her delivery she reiterated that there are great advantages for sports tourism in the region, and that major resort chains and corporate entities continue to support sports. With this support, added to the contribution from the Government, the possibilities are endless, she said.

"The advantages are clear…with the right investment from the private sector, I know the development of infrastructure for sports and with full Government support, there is no limit as to how far (Westmoreland) football can go, and I for one, will be doing everything in my power as Minister to assist," she pledged.

Through the Government’s continued commitment and contribution to sports development in Westmoreland, two schools – Petersfield High and Grange Hill High – will be receiving J$10 million each to improve sports infrastructure, Minister Neita Headley informed.

The community members will have access to these upgraded facilities at the schools, with special management teams to be set up to ensure that they are properly secured and maintained.

"One of the things about developing community fields and community hard courts is that the moment you leave those courts alone without proper management, without proper organisation…leadership, when you go back there one year later, it is as if you never did work…and so whatever it is we do at these schools, we are very clear that there is a management programme in the schools," she said.

Neita Headley commended the Westmoreland Football Association for its stewardship in managing the affairs of the sport over the years.

The Minister highlighted the parish for producing the two-time National Premier League champion Reno FC; two daCosta Cup champions, Frome Technical High and Godfrey Stewart High, as well as several members of the national coaching outfit and national players for various squads.

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