Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Hon. Rudyard Spencer, has reiterated his call that incarcerated persons should leave the penal system transformed.
Addressing the opening session of the ‘We Transform’ sports day, held at the Rio Cobre Juvenile Correctional Centre, in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, today (August 21), Spencer said juveniles must make the best of the reform process while they serve time.
“When you leave, we want to ensure that you leave here significantly better than when you came. We want to ensure that when you leave here, you are ready for the open society to make your contribution,” Spencer said.
The ‘We Transform’ initiative is being implemented through the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) in four juvenile centres for the rehabilitation and reintegration of youth offenders.
The programme has mentorship and internship/job placement segments, and an annual competition and exposition where youth can showcase their talents.
It is operated on a partnership approach involving the private sector, individuals and interest groups, such as the Organization of American States (OAS), and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
For Commissioner of Corrections, Ina Hunter, a lot was put into staging the sporting event, and it is going to help the participants in the development of their leadership skills, and teaching them how to “win with humility and lose with grace.”
Other partners on ‘We Transform’ are: Tastee, the Jamaica Public Service Company (JPSCo), Creative Media and Events, Hawkeye, Jamaica Money Market Brokers (JMMB), Operation Save Jamaica, Hylton Powell, Attorney-at-law; Caribbean Industrial Systems, Dot Creative Design Photographs and Famfun Entertainment.