The Scotia Jamaica Foundation has announced funding totalling J$3 million for the Jamaica Music Institute (JaMIN) Music Entrepreneurship Project, an initiative geared towards providing music-based training, business and development opportunities for at-risk youths and young adults living in Trench Town and surrounding communities.
The donation from Scotiabank was made possible through the bank’s partnership with the Jamaica Social Stock Exchange (JSSE).
Spearheaded by the Agency for Inner-city Renewal (AIR), JaMIN is a listed project on the Jamaica Social Stock Exchange.
The programme seeks to equip young people with entrepreneurship, production and audio engineering skills to improve their marketability. The JaMIN project taps into widespread youth interest in music, which has historically been among the most accessible pathways for self-development for the socially vulnerable.
During a recent tour of the facilities used to support the programme, Perrin Gayle, executive vice president of retail and SME banking, emphasised that Scotiabank supported the music project because it is aligned with its philanthropic mission of promoting economic resilience in families and communities.
“We believe that the work being undertaken through this programme will help to give birth to a new generation of trained, qualified cultural entrepreneurs that will impact Jamaica and our local culture through music production, audio engineering, or even events production,” Gayle said.
“Scotiabank is also supportive of the long-term goal of the programme as it aims to provide learners with certification to facilitate their matriculation to tertiary education in music-based disciplines, which is a key component of maintaining local and global competitiveness in these fields,” he added.
Marlene Street Forrest, managing director of the Jamaica Stock Exchange stated, “I am delighted that through the JSSE, JaMIN a listed project was able to raise funds especially from the generous donation of Scotiabank. This shows the power of collaboration and will lead to the social fabric of Jamaica being strengthened.”
She further stated, “the listing of a project on the JSSE allows for transparency of the activities of the projects, including the use of funds”.
Speaking on behalf on AIR, Dr Henley Morgan thanked Scotiabank for their contribution and the JSSE for its involvement in mobilising critical resources to make the JAMIN programme a reality.
“Hand outs will never be able to solve the social problems that exist in these communities, but hand ups will. By helping to create wealth through training and providing access to employment, we are enabling people to do for themselves,” Dr Morgan said. He also called for more mainstream support of small community entrepreneurs and social enterprises which he says are part of the greater solution in addressing societal problems.
Dr Morgan disclosed that currently the agency, AIR, is working to complete renovations to its studio facility located at the Trench Town Multi-Purpose Centre that is being used to facilitate the training programme.