The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) has reaffirmed its commitment to the Diaspora with the partnership support of the 8th Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference held at the Jamaica Conference Centre in Kingston, recently. Organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Foreign Trade, the four-day conference which had as its theme, ‘Jamaica and the Diaspora: Building Pathways for Sustainable Development’, has been positioned as the global forum that connects Jamaicans from all over the world for inclusive dialogue and developing concrete actions in vital areas of national importance.
“The Diaspora has long been seen as critical to the Jamaica Tourist Board’s marketing efforts as Jamaicans living abroad serve as our ambassadors globally, especially in our primary source markets,” said Donovan White, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “We are so pleased to have partnered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, hosting key print journalists from North America to be able to provide those in Diaspora with updates with regard to the National Diaspora Policy, new developments in the tourism sector and other issues of concern.”
As part of its sponsorship, the Board hosted members of the international media from North America, affording them an opportunity to attend and provide coverage of the conference and experience some of the capital city’s attractions including Devon House as well as brunch at Strawberry Hill.
During the conference, a proposal was tabled for the establishment of the Global Jamaica Diaspora and Global Jamaica Youth Councils. Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith, said the Global Jamaica Diaspora Council is intended to be an expanded and inclusive body with a wide membership of individuals “who hold Jamaica at the forefront of their voluntary efforts”. The Minister noted that not only will the Council ease the burden placed on the Diaspora Advisory Board, “but it will allow for greater inclusivity of Jamaicans living afar in lands across the oceans”. The Council is intended to have members from six regions not currently represented on the Board. These are Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and the Middle East.
Former Executive Director of the Jamaica Diaspora Institute Professor Neville Ying, was presented with the inaugural Jamaica Diaspora and Friends Excellence Award for his dedicated service to establishing links between Jamaica and its diaspora community. During his almost 10 years as the head of the Diaspora Institute, Professor Ying was responsible for the development and execution of strategic initiatives for engaging and empowering members of the Jamaican Diaspora to maximize their contributions to the economic and social development of Jamaica.
The conference culminated with the Diaspora Day of Service which encouraged organizations and delegates to volunteer their time, skills and resources to individual and community projects of their choice.
About Jamaica Tourist Board
The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), founded in 1955, is Jamaica’s national tourism agency based in the capital city of Kingston. JTB offices are also located in Montego Bay, Miami, Toronto and London. Representative offices are located in Berlin, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam and Mumbai.
TripAdvisor® ranked Jamaica as the #1 Caribbean Destination and #14 Best Destination in the World in 2019. Also this year, the International Council of the Pacific Area Travel Writers Association (PATWA) named Jamaica the Destination of the Year and TravAlliance Media named JTB Best Tourism Board, and Jamaica as Best Culinary Destination, Best Wedding Destination and Best Honeymoon Destination. Additionally, the JTB has been declared the Caribbean’s Leading Tourist Board by the World Travel Awards (WTA) for thirteen consecutive years between 2006 and 2019. Jamaica also earned the WTA’s award for the Caribbean’s Leading Destination, Leading Cruise Destination and Leading Meetings & Conference Centre 2018 for the Montego Bay Convention Centre. Jamaica is home to some of the world’s best accommodations, attractions and service providers that have won several awards throughout the years.
For details on upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica go to the JTB’s Web site at www.visitjamaica.com or call the Jamaica Tourist Board at 1-800-JAMAICA (1-800-526-2422). Follow the JTB on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube. View the JTB blog at www.islandbuzzjamaica.com.