"The value of being able to increase the number of clients who receive treatment and counselling here, based on the renovations and expansion, cannot be captured in monetary terms. That more persons living with HIV will have accessible, available and affordable services, in a friendly and comfortable environment, is priceless," stated Minister of Health Dr Fenton Ferguson in his address at the contract signing and handover ceremony held at JASL on Friday.
The Kiwanis Club of Constant Spring, which will provide contribution, in terms of volunteer labour, was lauded by the minister for the selflessness of its members and continued commitment and support to JASL for the past seven years.
In expressing his thanks to Japanese ambassador, His Excellency Yasuo Takase, Dr Ferguson said, "we trust that you will be heartened by the significant improvement you will see in our health services due to your kind contribution."
"the strengthening of the multi-sectoral response will be the key to how readily we will be able to advance towards the very ambitious but inspiring UNAIDS targets of zero discrimination, zero transmission and zero AIDS related death."
This event came within 24 hours of the Japanese Embassy providing funding for six ambulances worth US$73,350 to the St John National Council.
Dr Ferguson also thanked the government of Japan for its continued support of the health sector in Jamaica.
PRESS RELEASEThe Grant details were as follows:
The Jamaica AIDS Support for Life receives JMD $11,000,000 to expand clinic from the Embassy of Japan in Jamaica The National Health Sector stands to benefit from the $11 Million grant received by JASL to expand its clinic. Jamaica AIDS Support for Life is the only non Government treatment site in the island and since its relocation to its new home, the organisation has seen a 419 % increase in clinic attendance without an expansion of the clinic space.. In light of this JASL was able to secure a grant to assist with the cost for the much needed expansion, with the kind assistance of The Kiwanis Club of Constant Spring.
The Embassy of Japan in Jamaica through its Grassroots and Human Security Grant Project has donated $11,000,000 to assist with the renovation and expansion of the clinic space. The Ambassador of Japan in Jamaica, His Excellency Yasuo Takase, said he would like to leave a legacy in Jamaica and JASL’s clinic expansion is one of his final projects before his diplomatic tour of duty ends.
The clinic which serves members of key populations (persons living with HIV, men who have sex with men and sex workers) will be expanded to include: counselling/ VCT (testing) room; a pharmacy dispensary to provide anti-retroviral and drugs for opportunistic infections; phlebotomist station; and an extending waiting area.
Through this expansion, JASL has estimated that the clinic will be able to serve almost 1,000 additional persons.
A) Grassroots Human Security Project
Grassroots Human Security Project provides non-refundable financial assistance for development projects designed to meet the diverse needs in Jamaica. The project does not offer direct government-to-government grant assistance. However this project aims to provide flexible and timely support to development projects at the grassroots levels such as NGOs, hospitals, schools, local authorities and other non-profit organizations. The following are priority areas for the project:
Natural disaster response
Other global issues within the local context
Since 1995 Japan has provided a total of US$ 5 million to 80 local projects through the project. To see more details on the project, please click here for the guideline.