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Growing Jamaica’s Hotel Industry while Training At-Risk Youths

 

IDB approved a US$6.75 million loan to Caribe Hospitality Jamaica in December 2012 to construct and operate a 129 room Marriott Courtyard Hotel in New Kingston Jamaica.  In addition to providing loan funds, IDB saw the opportunity to provide technical assistance to enhance the development impact of the project.  IDB then conducted a Shared Value Appraisal, in partnership with Deloitte and Cuso International.  A Shared Value appraisal is the IDB’s strategic assessment tool which identifies opportunities for companies to partner with community stakeholders such that both the stakeholders benefits and the company benefits.

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Two of the social investment opportunities identified allow youth-at-risk, as well as Small and Medium Sized Enterprises  (SME’s) including female entrepreneurs an opportunity to tap into the economic value chain of the hotel’s development.  In terms of youth-at-risk, the goal of the Shared Value Appraisal has been to provide youth-at-risk who live or frequent the New Kingston area, with an opportunity to benefit from the project, by learning a skill and becoming part of the construction or operations crew.   To achieve this, the IDB provided grant funding to engage Deloitte and Cuso international as consultants to design a programme, which would reach out to youth –at-risk and provide them a job on the construction site of the hotel or in its operations.   The IDB is pleased to report that 5 persons, with the assistance of the Citizen Security & Justice Programme (CSJP) and through the generosity of the contractor Prime Construction Limited, were able to start a 6 month internship programme two weeks ago.

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In addition, the IDB through its Multilateral Investment Fund (“MIF”), is in the process of designing a programme which will provide SMEs an opportunity to supply goods and services to the hotel.  This programme will be executed through the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (“JBDC“) as the executing agency and will involve conducting a diagnostic and analysis of what opportunities exist to supply goods and services to the hotel and also what capacity exists in the local small and medium sized business sector to supply these goods and services.

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