CHASE Salutes the Success of “Flight”

03 Jul, 2019

Since 2016 the CHASE Fund has been supporting the JAFTA Propella Initiative to identify and promote the talent of Jamaican filmmakers through the creation of short films. The objective is to support emerging film writers and producers with the long-term goal of building a strong and diverse film community

Established in 2016, JAFTA Propella has been selecting up to five budding film-makers through a film competition.  The production of the short films is funded by the CHASE Fund.  In this its third year, those selected, were granted J$850,000 and a trip to premiere their films at the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival.

Flight” was one of the four films produced for 2018.  The film follows Kemar, a youth from the inner-city who dreams of flying to the moon. The inspirational 13-minute film is aimed at inspiring youth to dream big irrespective of their circumstances.

Screenwriter and Director, Kia Moses and members of her production team, visited the CHASE Fund on June 28, 2019 to screen the film and discuss its success with members of the CHASE Board of Directors.   Moses outlined the production journey and highlighted the many awards the film had received including the BWFN (Black Women in Film Network) awards for: Best Screenplay, Audience Award, and Best in Festival; two awards (Best Short Film and Audience Award) at the Nouveaux Regards Film Festival in Guadeloupe; and the prize for the Best Short Film at the Festival International du Film Pan African de Cannes in France.


Since inception in 2003, the CHASE Fund has played a supportive role in the funding of film and video production and has also provided scholarships for students pursuing training in film production.

CHASE Builds New Classrooms for Cambridge Infant School


The Cambridge Infant School in St. James has been transformed with the construction of a new classroom block with funding from the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education Fund, (CHASE).  The handing over ceremony of the new building, took place on Thursday, June 20, 2019.   Included in the $38 million construction is a new kitchen, lunchroom and sanitary facilities.

Mrs. Latoya Aquart-Foster, Project Manager of CHASE, in her address to the appreciative audience made up of parents, teachers and community members, noted that modern infrastructure and age appropriate facilities, highly trained teachers and well-resourced programmes are essential elements of a quality and comprehensive learning environment for basic school students.  “These students are at a crucial stage of life in terms of their physical, intellectual, emotional, social and creative development and must be provided with positive learning experiences,” she said.

The school, which has been operating since 1951, has 115 students enrolled.


Project Manager of the CHASE Fund Latoya Aquart-Foster (left) presents keys to the new classroom block at Cambridge Infant School to Principal Ophelia Watson-Haughton (2nd right) at the official opening on Thursday, June 20, 2019. Looking on are Faith Lyle of the Early Childhood Commission (2nd left), Dr. Walton Small, Principal Wolmer’s Boys’ School (centre) and Mayor of Montego Bay, Homer Davis (right).

Boianani: A Taino Girl’s First Adventure


The children’s book, “Boianani: A Taino Girl’s First Adventure,” was launched at the Multi-Function Room, Main Library, University of the West Indies, Mona Campus on May 30, 2019.

Boianani” is a beautifully illustrated children’s book which presents Taino life in a brilliantly written and captivating story. The book, authored by archaeologist and educator, Dr. Lesley-Gail Atkinson-Swaby, benefitted from a $750,000 CHASE grant.

The CHASE Fund has contributed to the publication of more than 90 books that enhance the collection of outstanding historic and literary works about Jamaica and the Caribbean, written by Jamaican authors, or compiled by Jamaican institutions.

CHASE Supports the Establishment of Jamaica’s First Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory


Jamaica’s first Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) was officially opened on May 30, 2019.  The CHASE Fund contributed $40 million to the $300 million project which began in January 2018 with donations from the Ministry of Health & Wellness and the National Health Fund.

The state-of-art equipment in the laboratory enables specialist clinicians to perform minimally invasive tests and procedures to diagnose and treat some of the most complex cardiac and interventional patients.

CHASE CEO, W. Billy Heaven in commenting on the CHASE contribution, noted the value of the laboratory to healthcare in Jamaica. “To maintain and improve the health of all we must shape a sound and efficient health system that will provide effective disease prevention and treatment options and care for everyone”, he said.  Heaven added that    the provision of state-of-the-art facilities and equipment would not achieve this outcome if it is not matched by good customer care and good maintenance programmes.

Mr. Heaven also noted that CHASE’s financial support to the UHWI amounts to $384 million to date.


Peace Garden

30 Apr, 2019

Her Excellency the Most Honourable Lady Allen walks the labyrinth at the Peace Garden located at the Hope Botanical Gardens in St Andrew after it was officially opened on March 28, 2019.

The Peace Garden was established by the Rotary Club of St Andrew in partnership with Nature Preservation Foundation, the operators of the Hope Botanical Gardens. The CHASE Fund provided financial support to establish the garden with a waterfall, gazebos and a meditation labyrinth.

The Peace Garden is meant to be a space for meditation, contemplation, relaxation and a focal point for discussions, mediation and conflict resolution.  The Rotary Club intends it to support the long-term, peace-building efforts within the overall national dispute resolution framework and increase capacity for conflict resolution at the community level.


Sight Foundation Receives Vehicle from CHASE

08 Feb, 2019

The CHASE Fund has boosted the Lions Club of Kingston’s Sight Foundation with the purchase of a vehicle for its mobile sight screening service.  The vehicle will allow the team to conduct screening on the very needy and children in schools in inner city communities who would otherwise have no access.

Jim Luce (left), President and CEO of the James Dudley Luce Foundation and Robert Lawrence (right) First Vice-president of the Lions Club of Kingston chat with Hilary Coulton, Public Relations and Administrative Manager of the Fund after she presented the vehicle to the Lions Club.

The Fund’s objectives are in sync with those of the Lion’s Club Sight Foundation which has been conducting eye screenings for the needy and poor and children in inner city primary and infant schools since 1971, mainly in the Kingston Metropolitan Area.

Support for the screening programme falls under the Fund’s Health portfolio which has been financing projects that include the promotion of healthy lifestyles; building, upgrading, restoring and equipping health facilities; training for healthcare personnel; and developing and implementing programmes for cancer prevention, detection, treatment and care.


CHASE Supports Mathematics Workshop for Early Childhood Education Teachers


Trisha Williams-Singh, Chairman of the Early Childhood Commission, (left), Heidi Clarke, Executive Director of the Sandals Foundation and Hilary Coulton, Public Relations and Administrative Manager at the CHASE Fund (right), review material related to the Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes®, On Cloud Nine® Mathematics Workshop held at the Terra Nova Hotel on February 4-5, 2019.

The workshop, which was funded by CHASE, was presented by the Creative Language-Based Learning in collaboration with the Sandals Foundation, the Embassy of the United States of America and with the endorsement of the Ministry of Education.

Fifty-seven (57) educators from across the island spent two days learning methodologies that will be used to help students develop symbol imagery and verbalize the concepts for mathematics; learn concept imagery and numeral imagery; and improve mathematical reasoning and mathematical computation.


Early Childhood Conference

28 Dec, 2018

The CHASE Fund provided financial support for the Dudley Grant Memorial Trust Annual Early Childhood Development Conference which was held from November 8-9, 2018 in Montego Bay under the theme – “The Early Childhood Family: Home, School, Community”.  CHASE CEO Billy Heaven, pictured above, opened the Conference.



Six Great Jamaicans



CHASE supported the reprinting of Six Great Jamaicans: Biographical Sketches, a compilation of the life stories of Archbishop Enos Nuttall, George William Gordon, Robert Love, Thomas Henry McDermot, Edward Jordon, and Herbert George De Lisser.  Written by Adolphe Roberts, the latest edition contains a new introduction by Matthew Smith.   CHASE contributed $600,00 towards the reprint in response to a request from the Institute of Jamaica.  CHASE’s contribution was acknowledged during a relaunch of the book at the Gleaner Company, North Street on November 11, 2018.



New Building for New Forest Infant School



The New Forest Infant School was established in 1948 and has been catering to students from Alligator Pond, Comma Pen, New Forest and surrounding communities.


The New Forest Infant School located in New Forest Manchester, has been transformed into a model school with the addition of a four-classroom block, staff room, kitchen and sick bay and the renovation of the existing structure. CHASE provided a grant of $43M.  The Minister of Education, Sen. the Hon. Ruel Reid, participated in the opening on November 29, 2018.  Billy Heaven, CHASE CEO, in his address to an audience made up of parents, teachers and members of the New Forest and other communities, noted that very high proportion of learning takes place from birth to age six.   Students, he said, “are at a crucial stage of life in terms of their physical, intellectual, emotional, social and creative development and must be provided with positive learning experiences.”