JAMAICANS Abroad Helping Jamaicans At Home Foundation (JAHJAH) leads a contingency of volunteers for a week of community service projects to improve the health and educational outcomes of Jamaicans.
More than 20 volunteers from across the United States have a rigorous itinerary from January 17 through 24, during the organisation’s annual Mission for Change.
“Mission for Change 2016 is a time to enjoy Jamaica, while serving. Volunteers have a chance for authentic Jamaican experiences while doing great and worthwhile works,” said emergency physician Dr Trevor Dixon, CEO and founder of JAHJAH Foundation.
The week of service kicks off with the third annual Conference on Paediatric Cancer — a collaboration with the Bustamante Children’s Hospital, National Health Fund, Ministry of Health, South Eastern Regional Health Authority, and Columbia University, New York.
Project partners are expected to facilitate workshops, provide training and lead discussions on the many facets of treating paediatric cancer. Doctors from public hospitals across the island are expected to convene at the Knutsford Court Hotel on January 18 to delve into this year’s theme: Palliative Care.
Additionally, a work group will be formed to develop a plan to renovate a section of an existing building at the Bustamante Children’s Hospital for conversion into the paediatric ward.
Mission for Change 2016 is also expected to offer doctors from Jamaica’s public hospitals training on effective uses of ultrasound technology during the two-day Annual Ultrasound Conference from January 18-19 at the Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston.
Also, for the second year, athletes from various high schools will receive echocardiogram screenings as part of the One Love, One Heart project, presented in partnership with Team Jamaica Bickle. This year, students from the Alpha Academy, Excelsior High, Edwin Allen High, and Holmwood Technical High School will be included.
“One activity that our volunteers look forward to is Healing in the Dancehall,” said Dixon. “Brother Witty of Uptown Mondays allows us and Jamaica AIDS Support For Life to conduct HIV, diabetes and other screenings during the session, and the patrons seem to welcome the resources and the volunteers enjoy a real Jamaican dance; some have said it is life-changing.”
There are also two health fairs planned, one at the Haile Selassie School in Kingston and the other at the Ulster Spring Health Centre in Trelawny. JAH JAH Foundation said students will be invited to receive health and dental screenings as part of the wellness efforts of
The team of volunteers is expected to spend two days in Trelawny, from January 20 to 21, providing general medical checks, ultrasounds, pap smears and diabetes screenings. The team will also be working to create an emergency section within the health centre to increase the health services within the area.
JAH JAH Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation that is reportedly committed to sharing ideas, technology, tools and resources with public hospitals and schools in Jamaica. The foundation partners with individuals and groups across the globe to organise teams for mission trips to serve the poor in Jamaica.