SUPREME VENTURES Group (SVG) Executive Chairman Gary Peart led a team through the streets of Gregory Park, St Catherine, as part of COVID-19 relief efforts orchestrated by the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) to support struggling communities through the economic downturn caused by the global pandemic.
SVG donated to the effort dubbed ‘PSOJ Cares Partnership’, which involves local corporations donating money to the PSOJ that would, with the assistance of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), deliver care packages of basic food items to vulnerable communities over several weeks.
The group participated in the first donation in Gregory Park since coming on board as a partner to show support to the residents, many of whom visit or maintain a livelihood from the operations at Caymanas Track that has been closed for two months as a result of the local spread of COVID-19.
With the pending June reopening of Caymanas Track and the resumption of racing, Peart says the outreach opportunity was perfectly aligned with the group’s vision.
“The closure of Caymanas Park to preserve public safety has taken a serious toll on the livelihood of several families in the surrounding areas who make their living either working at the track or with racing stakeholders or just selling goods and services on race days. We came on board because we saw where the PSOJ’s programme aligned with our desire to provide relief efforts in the Gregory Park area and other communities,” he said.
Peart says the team, which included Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited’s General Manager Lorna Gooden, wanted to personally show their support to the community and the PSOJ.
According to Gooden, several safety measures, which will ultimately be approved by the Ministry of Health and Wellness, will be put in place to allow for patrons to enjoy the sport when racing returns. “We will be ready for the resumption of racing, but at the same time, we do not want to erode the progress we’ve made as a nation in the containment of the coronavirus. All our sanitary conveniences will be ready to facilitate frequent handwashing and the approved number of patrons will be spaced out to allow for reasonable social distancing.”
The relief will be extended to Gregory Park and several other communities in the St Catherine area identified by the JCF as particularly vulnerable due to movement restrictions and reduced economic activity. The relief includes a bag of basic food items and will be distributed over the course of at least eight weeks.