LONG HILL, Westmoreland — FOOD For The Poor (FFP) on Tuesday officially declared open the Kings Infant School, formerly known as the Long Hill Basic School, in Long Hill, Westmoreland.
It is the first early childhood institution to be built for the parish of Westmoreland and the county of Cornwall under the FFP Jamaica 50 Campaign, which seeks to build and or upgrade 50 early childhood institutions within 50 months.
The Kings Infant School will serve the communities of Long Hill, Whitehouse, Red Gate, and Petersville. It boasts three classrooms, a sickbay, an office for the teachers, a kitchen, and bathrooms.
Over the years, the Long Hill Basic School was housed in several temporary facilities in the community. For the past four years, it was housed in cramped conditions in a section of the Grade one classroom at Kings Primary School.
Subsequently, the St Thomas King's Anglican Church Diocese of Jamaica donated the land for the construction of the school by FFP. This latest development has also led to the renaming of the school, and FFP will also be making advanced training available to the teachers at that institution, in keeping with standards set by the Early Childhood Commission (ECC).
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Samantha Mahfood, executive director, Food For the Poor Canada; expressed appreciation to the Anglican Church and the 'Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation' for their donations, which made the school a reality.
"Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation, the Canadian-Jamaican donors, financed the construction and furnishing of the school. We commend our local and international donors of the FFP Jamaica 50 Campaign. Without our donor's financial support we cannot change a child's future," she argued.
Dita Scott Myers, principal, Kings Infant School, expressed appreciation to FFP for the construction of the new facility.
"We are all overjoyed for this new school. This institution will go a long way in helping the community's children to learn in comfort, and with the spacious classrooms we can now accommodate more children." The school has a population of 31 students but it has the capacity to accommodate 60.