Jamaican youth having equitable access to education, learning resources and financial facilities enabling the wholistic development of individuals and communities
To contribute to national development goals by supporting partnerships in education, youth, entrepreneurship and the democratisation of wealth in order that Jamaica may achieve our Vision 2030 goals: Jamaica a place of choice to live, work, raise families, do business and retire
Building the future is the bedrock of Barita’s vision. That means more than wealth. It means education, opportunity and access to the resources that make it all possible. Barita Foundation is about bringing that vision to Jamaica's youth.
We’re here to equip tomorrow’s leaders with what it takes to shape the future they deserve. With our focus on education and financial literacy, we’re here to help democratise opportunities and wealth. We’re creating a Jamaica built on confident, empowered youth.
Tomorrow’s progress is in good hands.
We’re doing our part to make sure of that.
We’ve identified key pillars that bolster our endeavours and keep our efforts focused. The Barita Education Foundation has evolved to become the Barita Foundation. Nevertheless, education- and all the access and opportunities it can bring- remains one of our core objectives. We recognise that education has evolved, along with what is required to safeguard its success, and are working to support learning across a changing educational landscape.
Annually in December, the Barita Foundation engages the Barita team through its Staff Wishing Tree Competition. The competition invites staff to nominate organizations which are doing good work in our communities and have them supported through the Foundation by donating one-hundred thousand dollars to each successful entity. Three organizations are selected, one from each county; Surrey, Middlesex, and Cornwall and a donation of $100,000. This also forges new relationships and partnerships with through the Foundation, allowing us to have a wider impact across the nation. This year, the three organizations presented with $100,000 each were, Pursued International Foundation – Surrey, Ebenezer Rehabilitation Centre – Middlesex, and Kiwanis Club of Santa Cruz – Cornwall.
Di Cawna Library, in Providence Heights, St. James was launched right in time for Barita Foundation’s Read Across Jamaica Day activities. The sustainably constructed library is made from recycled refrigerators, wooden seating and serves community members, adults and children alike. The Cornerstone/Barita team in Montego Bay participated in a read aloud to 100 children from the New Providence Infant and Primary school at the outdoor library on May 9. There was also a successful reading day in Kington at the Wilbert Stewart Basic school.
The Barita Foundation partnered with the Wilbert Stewart Basic School for the second staging of their Spelling Bee Competition by providing trophies to the top spellers. The school’s champion speller went on represent the school in Optimist Club of Harbour View's Wee Bee Spelling Competition and emerged the top speller amongst those from 10 other participating schools. We are proud to have partnered with them and to see their little learners achieve great success.
Education takes many forms, we believe that our nation’s youth should be able to learn through diverse avenues. It is this understanding about the direct relationship between our environment being connected to our overall health and well-being that premises the Barita Foundation’s excitement in partnering with the Forestry Department, The Foundation sponsored the National Tree Planting Competition organized and executed by the Foresty Department covering the awards for the Most Innovative Primary School and The Most Innovative Teacher in the Competition. Here, Samora Bain presents the certificate to the student representative of the most innovative school, Prospect Primary, St. Thomas.
In response to a request from Operation Restoration Christian School, the Barita Foundation donated funds to support the hiring of a Mathematics teacher for the 2022/23 academic year. The principal reported that the impact was meaningful since the teacher not only brought her technical skills to the classroom but was also passionate about teaching at-risk children. In supporting the students preparation for upcoming exams, the Foundation team visited the school to rap with the children and provide some motivation for both staff and students.
This past Labour Day was very impactful for our Cornerstone Barita Family in Kingston, Mandeville and Montego Bay. Our teams painted and planted during our enhancement projects and left our cornerstone strong hearts and hard word in our communities. Specifically, in Downtown Kingston at the Matthew 25:40, Mustard Seed Communities. In Mandeville at the Barita Kiddies Park and in Montego Bay at the Mount Salem Primary & Infant School. Our Foundation slogan says, "tomorrow is built on today's foundation" and that's what we strive to do, together - play our part in advancing the welfare of our communities and the country and at large. Great job team!
The Foundation supported the building of For the Fundamental's second "Cawna Library" in Providence Heights, Montego Bay on March 5th. The library, which is constructed with recycled refrigerators and donated books, will provide a safe space for residents to be able to borrow and read books while building relationships with each other.
The Foundation partnered with FHI360 and USAID to implement its first project, “Making Ends Meet” (MEM), which started in August 2022. Twenty-two beneficiaries, who were assessed as being at-risk of engaging in crime and violence, completed the project and have been empowered to start or grow their own businesses.
In March, PALS Jamaica with support from the Barita Foundation, revived the celebration of Peace Day face to face at Calabar Primary School in downtown, Kingston. The day featured performances by the children and invited guests and speeches by the Ministers of Education & Youth and National Security, encouraging attendees to practice resolving conflicts peacefully.
On January 21, hundreds of teachers converged at the Jamaica Conference Centre, Kingston, to participate in the inaugural Global Education Teachers Summit (GET Sum). The Barita Foundation sponsored 60 teachers, particularly those from the early childhood sector, to attend the one-day event that was designed to equip them with evidence-based strategies and skills that will meet the needs of their students.
The Live to Give Foundation was the Barita Foundation’s Staff Wishing Tree Competition Winner for the county of Middlesex. According to Carlton Stewart, who nominated the organisation, “the Live to Give Foundation has given over 300 families bags of groceries, 50 students with scholarships, 1000 children back to school supplies, 2 families in need of housing, over 500 kids with Christmas cheer, and donations for a children's home. This gift will be extremely beneficial and will help us go closer to realizing our mission of Impacting Lives through Love.”
The Rotary Club of LIFE was the Barita Foundation’s Staff Wishing Tree Competition Winner for the county of Cornwall. According to Monique Sloley who nominated the organisation, “the Rotary Club of LIFE will be working with the St. James Correctional Services to rehabilitate and reform at-risk youth through community development and personal development workshops, including, but not limited to, conflict resolution, anger management, vocational training, painting murals, and creating and monitoring vegetable gardens…This Christmas gift would go a far way in helping to catalyse the project.”
The National Parent-Teacher Association of Jamaica (NPTAJ) was the Barita Foundation’s Staff Wishing Tree Competition Winner for the county of Surrey. According to Mitsie Dillon, who nominated the organisation, “the NPTAJ in playing its role, has as its primary focus in particular for the next two years, training and retraining of our PTAs and parents in particular about the importance of their role and function, not only in their families but also in our schools. To be successfully awarded the $100,000 would mean the world, as the NPTAJ would be able to achieve its mission in a more timely and meaningful manner for the benefit of our children, our schools, our communities and our nation.”
The Barita Foundation in collaboration with FHI360 and USAID launched the “Making Ends Meet” (MEM) project on November 15. The project is designed to empower a group of young at-risk parents who live in three volatile communities in Kingston and St. Andrew. It will run until March 2023 and beneficiaries will have access to psycho-social workshops, skills training opportunities, and an entrepreneurship development programme that will help them to start or grow a business.
The Governor-General’s Programme for Excellence, through its I Believe Initiative partnered with the Barita Foundation and other local agencies such as the United Nations, Jamaica to deliver a semi-virtual Youth Consultative Conference on October 6. One thousand and eighty (1080) youth attended in-person, and live, online sessions. Attendees visited exhibitions and discussed how to leverage the power of technology to pursue the Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) and how to improve youth’s media and information literacy. This culminated in the crafting of a Youth Declaration on how youth and the society can use technology to help to achieve the SDGs.
In May 2022, the CJSDI and Barita Foundation partnered to implement a project that provided entrepreneurship training and development to youth who reside in central and western parishes of Jamaica. Under the project, HEART/NSTA Trust, the Rural Agriculture and Development Authority (RADA), the Companies Office of Jamaica, the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JCDC), and the Scientific Research Council (SRC) delivered training and provided services based on the mandate of their organisations. By the end of the four-month programme, twenty-three (23) graduates were awarded a certificate in Micro Entrepreneurship Level 2 by the HEART/NSTA Trust.
On August 10, the Foundation awarded 23 scholarships during its inaugural scholarship programme. This included seven for students who sat the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) examinations in 2022; six who would be registering to sit their CSEC/CAPE examinations in 2023; and 10 for students pursuing tertiary education. Of note were the three young women who were awarded the Rita Humphries-Lewin Scholarship for their pursuit of a tertiary level degree in early childhood education in honour of Barita’s founder’s passion for supporting the early childhood sector.
Thirty (30) Barita/Cornerstone team members turned up early on Labour Day to help to rehabilitate the grounds of the Galilee Basic School in Kingston. Activities included planting shrubs and trees and repainting classrooms, fences, and the outside of the main building. The highlight of the day was the repainting of a large mural, which spanned most of the border of the compound.
The eleven-strong Barita/Cornerstone Mandeville-based team became contractors for a day and helped Albion Primary School with some well-needed rehabilitation projects. Their most significant contribution was helping to rebuild the school’s perimeter fence.
Members of the Montego-based Barita/Cornerstone team did their Labour Day activity at the Paradise Basic School. The joy of teamwork, comradery and outreach within the community was the accelerant to the day's activities which included painting, weeding, cutting grass, and helping with basic plumbing.
The Barita Foundation has always had youth development at its heart. Our Foundation began to take shape shortly after the Friends of St. Martin de Porres started an intervention programme at the St. Martin de Porres Primary School in Gordon Town.
Finding sustainable ways to strengthen and support the school body was a hallmark of their efforts. When the Barita Education Foundation assumed responsibility for the programme in 2004, it built its platforms on the same ideals: young people deserved every opportunity to learn, grow and thrive.
As academic requirements have evolved, so have the Foundation’s strategies. Beginning with our Mentoring and Monitoring programmes, which saw them having an active presence in schools with teacher support, intervention programmes and school visits, the Barita Education Foundation, now known as the Barita Foundation, has expanded into educational spaces in the digital world and beyond.
Now our mission to engage and empower youth means creating programmes that support them across our key strategic pillars such as Entrepreneurship, Health and Wellbeing alongside our evolving Education and Youth Development initiatives. We want to help foster generations of young people who are equipped with the knowledge and opportunities that lead to financial confidence, wellness and the capacity to shape their futures.
We’re proud to partner with those who share our vision for Jamaica’s youth.
We’re looking forward to partnering with you, answering your questions or finding new ways to work together to support Jamaican youth and the future we envision.
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Or call us at (876) 926-2681