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Team Jamaica Bickle Still Needs Your Help

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The Penn Relays (also Penn Relays Carnival) is the oldest and largest track and field competition in the United States, hosted annually since April 21, 1895 by the University of Pennsylvania at Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The event typically attracts more than 15,000 participants annually from high schools, colleges, and track clubs throughout North America and abroad, notably Jamaica and other Caribbean islands, competing in more than 300 events over five days. This year’s carnival will conclude on Saturday, April 25 with attendance over three days expected to top 100,000 and surpass 50,000 on the final day.

This year there has been significant decline in corporate and public sponsorship to aid our Jamaican athletes. This is largely attributed to the challenging economic climate being faced by all. Despite these circumstances, the TJB resources will be even more taxed as Trinidad has asked the organization to assist their 52 person contingent of athletes in the same way TJB assists the Jamaican teams.

Most recently, Digicel, the largest mobile telecommunications operator in the Caribbean and a recent new entrant to the Central American mobile market heard the desperate pleas for help and signed on to this valiant effort. The company is known for its exemplary corporate stewardship and social responsibility to its business markets.

There are other entities that can be considered as the bedrock of TJB not only because of their tenure of association but primarily because of their commitment and intimate involvement in the programme to support the athletes. This year again, the Vincent HoHosang Foundation, Caribbean Foods Delight, JerkQ’zine headed by Mr. Vincent Hosang continues to provide yeo-man service, both in terms of personal time and involvement as well as in cash and kind. In fact most of the cash and in kind resources for this effort is provided by the various companies he /his family own and manages.

Other entities with a similar history include Transcontinental Shippers, Union of Jamaica Alumni Association (UJAA) Dennis Shipping, OJ Plumbing, Grace Foods USA, Philadelphia Organizing Committee, Tower Isle, Western Union and the Door Restaurant. Contribution over the years have also come from Jampact ,Negril Village, Yardman Style and Awesome Power Track Club just to name a few.

Founder and CEO of TJB Irwine Clare Snr. while expressing appreciation to all who have supported the organization this year, noted that ‘Money to pay for food, accommodation and transportation for some 500 athletes from 25 high schools in Jamaica and 52 athletes from 6 high schools in Trinidad is in short supply. Donations are therefore still urgently needed. These young persons who are the future of the Caribbean region have demonstrated by their discipline and commitment to sports that they can, if given the chance, be the promise of a better future. We must help to make that promise a reality by supporting them in any way possible …we can help them channel their creative energies positively through sports’

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Written by jamarch