Kingston, Jamaica (JIS)- Bustamante Hospital- Learning And Activity Room Outfitted: The Bustamante Hospital for Children’s Learning and Activity room has been outfitted as a state-of-the-art learning centre with the donation of several computers and accessories through the Governor-General’s ‘I Believe’ initiative.
The handover ceremony for the equipment was held on October 17 at the hospital’s Arthur Wint Drive address in Kingston.
The donation, which was made by the United States-based charity, Friends of Jamaica Seattle, included several computers, preloaded with software; flat-screen monitors, keyboards, surge protectors and printers.
An air-conditioning unit was also donated and installed by Appliance Traders Limited (ATL). Expanded Wi-Fi service to facilitate Internet access in the learning centre is being provided free of cost to the hospital by local telecommunications company, Flow Jamaica. An additional eight desktop computers are to be delivered to the institution soon.
The Learning and Activity Centre was reopened in 2012, following extensive renovation by the Scotia Bank Foundation and Restaurants of Jamaica Limited.
In her address at the ceremony, patron of the hospital, Her Excellency the Most Hon. Lady Allen, thanked the charity and sponsors for their generous donation.
Pointing out that convalescence can sometimes take many months, Lady Allen said the initiative will assist in improved quality of life for the young patients during their recovery while ensuring that they do not fall behind in their studies.
“From kindergarten up to grade six, if a student is here on a long-term basis, that student is not missing out on the regular curriculum of the school. We incorporate what we do here into the ‘I Believe’ initiative, because we believe in our children and our country. Our children need nurturing, and we have to give them the tools to be successful,” she said.
Meanwhile, Senior Medical Officer at the hospital, Dr. Michelle-Ann Richards- Dawson, said some of the children have to be at the hospital for months, and the centre would help to cater to their early education.
“We thank you for this generous gift, because we believe that what we do here sets the foundation for many children when they return home. So, while they are away from school it is important that they continue their education, and it is also part of the healing process that they feel positive about themselves,” she said.
Other stakeholders in the initiative are the Ministry of Health and the South East Regional Health Authority (SERHA).
Friends of Jamaica is a non-profit organisation based in Seattle, Washington, that aims to empower youth through technology.
‘I Believe’ is an initiative under the Governor-General’s Programme for Excellence.