Spring Garden, Jamaica
Jamaica is more than a cruise ship stop and the home country of Bob Marley. Jamaica has a rich history and culture.
Youthlinc is partnering with St Thomas Renaissance Foundation and will be working in the St Thomas province of Jamaica, which is the area in the country with the lowest incomes and opportunity for economic advancement. We will be working with them in the community of Spring Garden.
Spring Garden is home to 1,562 people and the unemployment rate is 28%. The community has identified their highest priorities as addressing youth and adult unemployment, literacy, and numeracy. Many people in the community still rely on a single public water source (pipe from ground), have lack of sanitation for their bathroom needs.
Youthlinc plans to work with the community to develop a sewing program, help the community build a small community center with a bathroom, add fencing to the school for security, teaching business seminars and working with local entrepreneurs to improve their businesses, run community health fairs, hold a Literacy camp for primary school students, and learn how to cook Jamaica food.
Join us on the maiden trip to Jamaica and see the REAL Jamaica, far from the cruise ships and work with some of the kindest people on the planet earth.
Travis Smith was born in Spanishwood, St Thomas, Jamaica where he spent his formative years. In 1981 he migrated to the United States and thereafter began his 27-year military career. He is a former Marine and retired from the Air Force as a Master Sergeant and Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge of his 50 -man Unit. His career in the military required his leadership of large teams and allowed for travel all over the world. Simultaneous to his military experience Mr. Smith was also a Captain with the New York City Department of Corrections where he spent 20 years. During his time in New York Mr. Smith also pursued a degree at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in NYC.
After retiring from the Air Force and NYC Corrections Mr. Smith, his wife and son returned to Jamaica in 2009, fulfilling a life long goal of returning to his homeland in order to provide a meaningful contribution.
He is a nine-year member of the Rotary Club of Downtown Kingston, Jamaica and a Past President and currently the Director of New Generations with responsibility for Junior Clubs. His service in the club allows for his mentorship of youth at the Kingston Technical High School where he is also a Board Member.
In 2016 Mr. Smith became one of the founding members of the St. Thomas Renaissance Foundation, Inc. a New York registered 501c3 organization focused on the total improvement of the parish of St. Thomas. The Foundation is comprised of persons worldwide who were born in St. Thomas and who continue to want the best for their parish.