KSAMC awarded for public health leadership role during pandemic
Mary Meeks (right) of the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporatrion hands out a meal to a homeless woman in downtown Kingston, in this file photo.

THE Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) is to receive one of six regional Circle of Excellence Awards for its public health leadership role in the care of the homeless and vulnerable during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The award will be presented at the Fast-Track Cities 2022 conference scheduled for Seville, Spain from October 11-13, 2022.

News of the award was delivered to Kingston Mayor Delroy Williams by the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care (IAPAC) in partnership with the Fast-Track Cities Institute.

The decision to recognise the KSAMC was made following a nomination process and subsequent deliberations by IAPAC and Fast Track Institute, in consultation with the joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).

During the pandemic, the KSAMC opened a night shelter and an adult transitional facility for vulnerable groups. The KSAMC also partnered with UNAIDS to raise awareness and champion the Fast-Track Cities initiative in Kingston working to end AIDS.

Additionally, the municipal corporation has been working with the Jamaican Network of Seropositives to create stigma-free spaces throughout the capital city.

The Seropositive network, which began in Trinidad in 1996, comprises people from various professions — such as chefs, maintenance workers, counsellors and entrepreneurs — who aspire, dream and support each other.

The KSAMC has also partnered with UNAIDS on a mural focused on raising awareness and ending stigma, and has spearheaded an inaugural lighting city red campaign in commemoration of World Aids Day.

During the pandemic, the KSAMC also hosted vaccine drives and health fairs for vulnerable groups.

— Claudienne Edwards

Claudienne Edwards

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