Port Antonio Primary gets $1-m surprise
THERE were screams of joy at Port Antonio Primary School when it was revealed the school would receive a $1-million gift from alumnus Michael Lee-Chin and the NCB Foundation (NCBF).
During a tour of the school, Lee-Chin, chair of NCB Financial Group Limited (NCBFG), surprised the school population with the revelation that the institution was his pick for the NCB Foundation’s 2023 Grant a Wish programme.
Lee-Chin, along with NCB Foundation Chair Thalia Lyn, visited the school on Thursday, December 7, where Lee-Chin first handed over his NCBFG chair’s allocation of $400,000 to Acting Principal Terri-Ann Palmer before NCBF Chair Lyn added her portion of $250,000 to the pot.
But that was not all.
“I have high aspirations for you…and I told the [foundation’s] chair Lyn that we can do better than $650,000, we’ll be upping the donation to $1 million,” Lee-Chin said as the acting principal clapped with joy.
“I wish I could scream and shout like the children, but I had to contain myself. I am ecstatic and thankful,” Palmer said after the presentation. “I really appreciate this unexpected gift…as many of our public schools are limited to the funds from the Government. When we receive assistance from the private sector, it is an honour and privilege that we make the most of.”
She listed three projects into which the funds could be channelled.
“We are operating in the original container building, and all aspects of the compound need refurbishing. One of our goals is the computer lab. Also, we need somewhere to house our sporting department.”
Palmer further explained: “We have been national champions in football, so we need a structured resource room to improve our offerings to the students beyond football and athletics.”
Some students were also gifted vouchers to start their own savings accounts with NCB.
The school caters to 607 students in the parish capital and shows very few upgrades since Lee-Chin attended the institution in the early 1960s.