MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA, September 2, 2014: Books4Kids Jamaica announced today the start of its 2014 book distribution, during which sponsors and volunteers personally will deliver book bags to 6,000 children in 60+ schools across 7 parishes. Each child will receive a book bag containing a BrainQuest Workbook, 1 – 2 reading books, crayons and a pencil. This year, the charity will distribute books and educational materials at an estimated value of US$100,000. 22 Kindergarten children at Spot Valley Infant School in Rose Hall were the first to receive this year’s book bags, while a number of other St. James based schools are on the schedule for the beginning days of the distribution. 1,000 four and five year old Kindergarten children at Montego Bay Infant School are set to receive books at 10:00 a.m. Monday 8th and Tuesday 9th September, 2014.
With an overall success rate of 91% measured among 2,574 children that completed this year’s annual ‘Books4Kids Assessment’, Kindergarten students who participate in the program continue to produce excellent results. Through the ‘Books4Kids Assessment’, a simple test that evaluates the children’s reading, writing, math and science skills, an achievement rate of 90% was measured among 1,280 four-year old K1 students while 1,294 five-year old K2 students achieved an overall success rate of 92%.
Said Ragni Trotta, Chairperson of the Books4Kids program: “We are delighted to report extraordinary, measured result among the children who participate in the Books4Kids Jamaica program. This has a lot to do with the teachers and Principals who are the everyday heroes, as well as the books of course, but together we are making a difference.”
6,000 BrainQuest Workbooks valued at US$80.000, form the core part of this year’s book distribution. The 360-page educational volume which covers the core curriculum of Alphabet, Numbers, Phonics, Shapes and Colours, has played a large part in the program’s success.
“The Workbook compliments our core curriculum and our teachers use it on a daily basis. The children are very excited to do the Workbook activities, and we get excellent feedback from parents who use it at home with the children. We have benefited tremendously from the books from Books4Kids Jamaica over the years.”
Mrs. Ennis, Principal at Falmouth Infant School
While this year’s books were shipped to the island courtesy of Seaboard & Freight Jamaica Ltd, local transportation company Jamaica Tours Limited (JTL) is providing its transportation services for the 7th year running. In addition to distribution teams, books and educational materials, Books4Kids will be bringing footballs, shoes and bags of rice.
The majority of funds for this year’s book distribution were raised through the charity’s 2014 Online Charity Auction featuring more than 100 worldwide vacation experiences, flights, sports memorabilia and art generously donated by sponsors. Additionally, Books4Kids Jamaica Ambassador Alsion Roach from the New York based Alsion Roach Group staged a fundraiser for Books4Kids Jamaica at the Jamaica Open New York golf tournament raising money for book project. A lot this year’s reading books were donated by Lilliane Bastien and the ‘One Book at a Time’ project in Montreal, Canada, and generously flown to Jamaica courtesy of Air Canada.
Books4Kids Jamaica wishes to thank the many sponsors, corporations and individuals who have made this year’s book distribution possible through donations of money, goods and services. The charity also thanks The Ministry of Education, The Ministry of Finance, The Jamaican Customs Department and Keith Thorpe Ltd. for their assistance in getting the books to Jamaica.