Scotiabank Donates $6.6m To Aid Basic Schools

Sanitization materials, printers donated to 50 rural early childhood institutions

L-R, Ian Forbes, Immediate Past Chairman of the United Way of Jamaica, Yanique Forbes-Patrick, Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications, Scotiabank, Winsome Wilkins, CEO , United Way, Trisha Williams-Singh, Chairman of the Early Childhood Commission ( ECC)  and Sandra Young, principal of the Gwen Neil Basic School in St. Catherine were photographed as they participated in a handover ceremony for a donation of $6.6Million dollars from Scotiabank to assist early childhood institutions in their reopening preparations and to supplement the ongoing virtual learning exercises. Through the effort fifty schools will receive sanitation equipment, printers and other supplies.

Kingston, Jamaica – December 16, 2020 - Scotiabank has donated a total of J$6.6 million to aid 50 early childhood institutions as they prepare for the eventual re-opening of schools.

Under the arrangement in partnership with the United Way of Jamaica and the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), the selected schools in rural Jamaica will receive donations of sanitation equipment, thermometers, storage bins, masks and other supplies necessary for mitigating the spread of COVID-19.

In addition, the Bank is also providing support by way of printers, ink and paper supplies for each school which will bolster their efforts to supplement the virtual learning experience currently being offered.

Yanique Forbes-Patrick, Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications, Scotia Group shared that the since March 2020, Scotiabank has provided over J$22 million in the areas of health care and education through numerous partnerships. As a long-standing supporter for education-based programmes, this latest donation further underscores the Bank’s commitment to supporting the island wide response to COVID-19.

“At Scotiabank, it is very important to us to give back to our communities especially our children as we all adjust to the new normal. For students at the early childhood level, virtual learning is not ideal and so we applaud the extraordinary efforts of the schools, the ECC and the Ministry of Education for their efforts in this regard” Forbes-Patrick said.

Currently, there are over 2000 early childhood institutions in Jamaica. Approximately 90 of those have received approval by the Health Ministry for full compliance with the COVID-19 guidelines provided.

“This is something that we are keenly pursuing and will continue to put in our best efforts to mobilize funding and other support for the schools most in need,” shared Winsome Wilkins, CEO,United Way. “Our role is to connect need with resources and so we are delighted to coordinate this effort on behalf Scotiabank and of course, the children who will benefit,” Wilkins said.

Tricia Williams-Singh, Chairman of the board of the ECC thanked the Bank for its contribution. “Readiness within the guidelines at the early childhood level requires considerable funding and this is not possible without public-private partnerships,” Williams Singh added.

Sandra Young , Principal of the Gwen Neil Basic School in Central Village expressed both gratitude for the donation and confidence about her schools’ readiness to reopen.


“We have met all the protocols, received our certification and our children are telling us they want to return to school. I believe we have done all we can, and with this support, we will be even better prepared,” Young said.

In addition to the donation of these materials with United Way, Scotiabank has also committed funding to provide handwashing stations in school through another NGO.

Across the globe, Scotiabank has committed some $25 million USD to aid local responses to the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis.