Jamaica News: Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, has commended the newly renamed Aquatic Sports Association of Jamaica (ASAJ), formerly the Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica, for its initiative to expand its facility to better serve the aquatic sports fraternity.
“We are proud of the efforts of the ASAJ, because we feel great when we see sporting bodies making a determined effort to help themselves…and not rely solely on sponsorship or Government for their every undertaking,” she said.
Miss Grange was speaking at a ceremony for the opening of the expanded administrative building of the ASAJ, at Independence Park, in Kingston, on January16.
She noted that with a first floor added, which was done at a cost of over $25 million, the association’s administrative building is now complete with additional office space, two meeting rooms and a VIP lounge.
“Most importantly, this extended building will enable the ASAJ to earn additional income, which is a most satisfying prospect,” she said.
The Minister commended construction firm BYD of the People’s Republic of China for its contribution of material and labour to the project, which reduced the overall building costs to the ASAJ.
“The BYD’s contribution of $7 million was motivated by what it saw as its duty to play its part in maintaining the good relationship shared by Jamaica and China,” she said.
Miss Grange also thanked the world governing body of aquatics, Fédération internationale de natation (FINA), for committing US$25,000 to the project.
In the meantime, President of the ASAJ, Martin Lyn, said the group saw the need to expand and modernise its offices in order to operate a more efficient aquatic centre; and to create meeting rooms to host ASAJ events, cub meeting events and FINA clinics annually.
He pointed out that there was also a need to create a special VIP area with a viewing deck to offer sponsors and visitors during swim meets, “which is an additional area to encourage and entice sponsors to support aquatics.”
“We will now be able to rent these spaces as well for an income towards supporting and developing our athletes as they go overseas to compete for Jamaica,” he said.
Funding support for the project was also provided by the Sport Ministry, through Independence Park Limited, and through internal financing from the ASAJ.
Source: JIS News