Fifteen fishermen from the fishing village of Greenwich Town in Kingston are now benefiting from new boat engines, which will increase their ability to generate income and employment.
The engines were supplied under the Jamaican Government’s Integrated Community Development Project II (ICDP II), which is executed by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF).
They will expand access to larger fishing grounds, increase the types of fish caught, and allow anglers to bring them to market faster.
Senior director of social development at JSIF, Mona Sue-Ho, told JIS News that the boat engines were provided at a cost of $7 million under the ICDP II business development grant, which is aimed at to provide business support to micro and small enterprises.
“So we had a number of fishermen from the fishing village who applied and so they were shortlisted and selected,” says Ms Sue-Ho.
She adds that the JSIF worked closely with the National Fisheries Authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries to ensure that those eligible could benefit from the grant.
“We wanted to make sure these fishermen were genuine…operating, so they had to have their licenses and they had to have seaworthy boats,” says Ms Sue-Ho.
JSIF has also worked closely with the Social Development Commission (SDC) and the Greenwich Town Community Development Council.
Ms Sue-Ho told JIS News that the provision of the $7 million for the boat engines was part of a larger support package.
“The total amount of grants awarded by the Jamaican government is $23 million and has benefited…132 (entrepreneurs),” she says, noting that the beneficiaries include the 15 fishermen from the fishing village of Greenwich. Town.
Meanwhile, beneficiary Ruby Britton expresses her gratitude to JSIF for the boat’s engine.
“I was so surprised and happy at the same time,” Ms Britton said, adding that this would be a major benefit to her business.
The ICDP II is funded by the Government of Jamaica for $1.9 billion and is implemented over the period from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2023.
The program aims to improve access to basic urban infrastructure and social services and contribute to increased community safety in selected economically vulnerable and socially unstable communities in Jamaica.
It targets seven communities spread over three parishes. These are Greenwich Town, August Town and Denham Town in Kingston and St. Andrew; Norwood, Salt Spring and Anchovies in St. James; and Treadlight in Clarendon.
“The main objective of this project is to improve the quality of life of residents by expanding their access to basic services such as water and road networks. It also includes a range of social services to include livelihood development projects and of course enterprise development grants,” says Ms Sue-Ho.