The last weeks of August saw a group of 30 (yes, 30!!!) volunteers hop aboard a flight from Canada to Jamaica. The reason? To help out with the construction of Bourne Gordon’s Pre-school & Kindergarten in Saint Catherine’s Parish, Jamaica

Our Senior Project Manager, Andrea worked alongside the Josephs family, led by Glenor Josephs. Her sons, their families and her grandchildren all participated as well. Joining them were volunteers from Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation and Kisko Freezies.

This was the 25th school built in partnership with FFPC by the Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation.

The construction or expansions of Kindergarten schools are not always fully funded by the Government in Jamaica. FFPC has been working with the government to expand schools for the youngest learners. Education is a priority for FFPC, our donors and the government of Jamaica.

Over four sweaty days, our volunteers finished the framing, completed the exterior and painted the inside and out. From what was only the start framework on their arrival, a school emerged. Bright and cheerful, safe and welcoming. Don’t worry though, fun was had by all during the hard work. Spontaneous singing and dancing kept everyone invigorated and focused on the task at hand.

Natasha Borota from Helping Hands Jamaica summed up the experience had by the volunteers perfectly,

“We are just so grateful and blessed. We come here and get so much out of being in Jamaica. more than anything we could leave behind.”

Bourne Gordon’s Pre-School & Kindergarten serves children in the 3-6 age group. The youngest of learners! The need for a new school was great as the existing school was unsafe. In its place, a beautiful, five classroom building will serve the community for years to come. The building is complete with desks and chairs, an office area and sick bay. As well, there are separate staff and student bathrooms. Even a kitchen with appliances and cupboards!

The school will have capacity for 75-100 students and will provide a place for children to learn. They will develop literacy, numeracy, and other important skills. All in preparation for primary level education. It will ease the challenges of inadequate classroom space, overcrowding, and improper sanitation. The completed project includes a water harvesting system, fence and playground.

Completion of the electrical and plumbing is ongoing. We expect that the school will be complete by the spring of 2023 and accept students that year.


On the last day, our group attended the opening ceremony. This was a special event for our volunteers to be part of and to celebrate this shared achievement.


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