After the WOW! workshop on Sunday, March 28, leaving a deft impact on Sargeantville Community as was expressed before OAaSIS volunteers left the area, a decision was made to combine the launch of the library with another workshop.
Founder said of yesterday’s workshop “Thanks for the input of those who travelled from across Jamaica and Japan to make March 28, Sunday’s workshop a deft impact, is simply not enough.”
The day of creative workshop series, was mostly motivational. Two practical workshops from Jermaine Gordon (musician, songwriter, motivator, poet) and Japanese Yasco Ishige(origami), BUT just impacting on Arts from True Hearts. Other sessions were by volunteers such as Howard Moo Young (master photographer, master graphic designer) and Craig Phang Sang (videographer and Sony dealer). A few resounding words from the community “Many, many, many, many Thanks for coming and showing, sharing and teaching in our hills and vallies”.
Over the past two years, some 50 books have been donated, and others have been bought from senior pastor Eric Bailey, to start a library on location for community residents, and supporters.
According to Barbara Henry, area representative, “We were thinking of even starting classes ourselves, as no one has been coming out to assist.” That is outside of those from the Sargeantville Methodist Church that has been as a well erected lighthouse in that and neighbouring areas. Hence the outpour of gratitude to the foundation for the workshop yesterday.
Ms Henry lamented that “too many youn g persons are just graduating and not able to work, or get a job, and sometimes it is not because they cant work. We have honest young persons who are willing, but sometimes it is just too far, and sometimes some of them are not fully qualified for a number of reasons.” The area’s youth are very involved with the churches, and generally the area has a low crime rate if any, as residents confirm.
Pastor John Smellie, now dead worked aciduously and sacrificially to get a lot started, and himself, as an educator taught mathematics and english after church services in his time.
Now the work is continued by Pastor Eric Bailey, brother to the once radio personality C Evans Bailey and Allan Bucknol (from the Airports Authority of Jamaica). At times family members such as Ted Smellie, son of John Smellie assist.
It has always been a shared passion of Pastor Smellie, Pastor Eric Bailey and others to have a library and an area for children to learn mathematics and english and anything to assist with their development and the community at large.
Now with the assistance of the OAaSIS community at least the first steps can be made.
There has been requests made to the NEET foundation for books, but despite promises, the demand from negril neighbours have forced Sargeantville nearer to the bottom of a long waiting list. NEET is the Negril Education Environment Trust. NEET is additionally partnering with the Rotary Club Internationally to supply thousands of books to schools.
The OAaSIS network will therefore seek to furnish the already pledged building with books, at least one computer and volunteer teachers to start the ball a-rolling.
One volunteer who for now wishes to remain private, is currently making preparations to access video equipment to set up an actual production department there so that the residents can eventually produce cds, videos on their own, and then with the assistance of professionals. They will also be able to make first steps in producing themselves by doing samples in order to take to established producers and marketers.
OAaSIS hopes to enable the launch of this library by year end.
The library is in tribute to Pastor John Smellie (who died) and Pastor Eric Bailey.
Residents remember the days when Pastor John Smellie donated hundreds of exercise books to the needy children to attend school. This project, especially as he died 5 years ago is being carried through by Anthea McGibbon, founder of OAaSIS, who worked alongside him, and on a larger scale. Following Pastor Smellie’s death, other books, but on a smaller scale were given randomly. Those young children are now really grown and needs more, in addition to the still existing needs of the younger ones.
According to residents, even older ones and adults need books to educate themselves as they have either no money to attend classes they would love to, or are interested in careers that are not easily accessible to them.
Areas include science, theatre and visual arts, culinary arts, business, pilot, catering, music, english, sports, bible. Materials additionally needed include paints, charcoals for drawing, drawing, pencils, paintbrushes, sketch papers, pastels, cameras, watercolour paper and paints, oils, acrylics and other art supplies.