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Jamaica’s First Lady Mrs. Lorna Golding Visit New York

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NEW YORK (JIS) – Monday, September 24, 2007: Jamaica’s early childhood and primary education programmes are soon to benefit from a robust feeding program to be commissioned by First Lady, Mrs. Lorna Golding.

Speaking with reporters in New York on Monday afternoon, Mrs. Lorna Golding, wife of Prime Minister Hon. Orette Bruce Golding said that she will be introducing a Lunch for Literacy program to benefit Jamaican students especially at the Early Childhood and Primary levels.

Mrs. Golding was among scores of first ladies from around the world at the launch of the global health and literacy initiative by Mrs. Laura Bush, wife of US President, George W. Bush at the Pierpont Morgan Library & Museum, in midtown Manhattan.

“This was a very informative meeting. I knew always that literacy goes with health. When you have bad health, you are not able to read and when you can read, you’re sure to enjoy much better health,” Mrs. Golding said.

Noting that, “you cannot learn unless you are well fed”, Mrs. Golding said that the lunch for learning project would provide a proper nutrition programme for the target groups through well equipped canteens in a presentable environment for dining, “and a child would be motivated to come to school because the menu was going to be a good one today”.

Training for the chefs for the feeding programme would be provided by the HEART Institute.

She said that Jamaica will be looking at the global module that was launched on Monday with a view to emulating concepts suitable to the local context.

Declaring at Monday’s luncheon launch that “quality basic education is critical for individual as well as national development”, Mrs. Bush announced that the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will launch a major initiative in support of the President’s commitment to basic education in six countries around the world beginning in Fiscal Year 2008, providing an additional four million students with access to quality basic education over a five year span.

The US Congress will spend $535 million on the project next year.

Mrs. Golding said that she was humbled at the opportunity to serve her country and that she will continue to advocate for and on behalf of the Jamaican people.

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