|Attorney General and St. Philip South Parliamentary Representative,??Adriel??Brathwaite unveiling the plaque as residents look on. (C. Pitt/BGIS)|
The importance of family and community was the focus over the weekend when the Emerald Recreational Park, Six Roads, St. Philip was officially opened.
Scores of parents and children gathered with officials of the National Conservation Commission (NCC) last Saturday, November 19, for the opening of the Commission’s 54th community park.
General Manager of the NCC, Keith Neblett told the gathering, that "a mandate of the NCC is to provide such facilities because government sees it [as] critical that recreation plays a very important role in the lives of children". He further underlined the importance of play in the lives and development of children within the community. "It teaches children…how to work as a team and how to work together," Mr. Neblett stated.
While highlighting that playing in the park was an activity that the entire family should share in, he also pointed out the benefits to parents observing younger children as they played. "It is easy at that stage to pick up any disabilities… It is easy at that age when children are at play. You can see where there are any issues," he said.
Mr. Neblett also urged parents and community members to take full advantage of the new facilities and to use the park to help build better relationships.
Chairman of the Board of the NCC, Tyrone Lowe, saw the opening of each park as bringing a community together, and he reminded persons that life was "more than just the four walls of your house."
He stated: "When you come out to your neighbour, you build relationships, ??… You become your brother’s keeper. And, the more vigilant you are in that regard, the stronger and closer your community is".
Mr. Lowe reminded persons that use of the NCC’s parks was not restricted to just toddlers and children. "We trust that adults, as they bring the children into the park, will spend the moment to sit, chat and build relationships…that they too will pull themselves away from the many cares of life and just be there with their younger ones to show they are protecting them, they care for them, they want to be with them and that they are spending quality time," he advised.