The COVID 19 pandemic has drastically changed what we know as normal, and mostly for the worse. Since the outbreak, Jamaica and its citizens have been suffering in almost every sector, including education.
The move to online learning has been no less than depressing for many students, especially those who do not own a device to participate in these classes. Despite the Government’s assistance through the Own Your Own Device program and others, some children are still suffering due to the huge economic gap or digital divide.
It is, therefore quite welcoming, that Popular comedian Steve Harvey has decided to lend a hand during this difficult struggle.
In an effort to bridge the digital divide in Jamaica, the 64-year-old American TV host is making a donation of US$15,000 to the Connect A Child initiative. The donation is reportedly being made through the comedian’s foundation, co-owned by his wife, Marjorie Harvey.
The Steve and Marjorie Harvey Foundation will assist the country’s children by purchasing 100 tablets for those who are having difficulties attending virtual classes due to a lack of remote learning devices.
The Connect a Child initiative was invented to support the education ministry, led by Fayval Williams, in their effort to supply learning devices under One Laptop or Tablet per Child Initiative. It is a collaborative effort of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica, National Education Trust, Jamaica Social Stock Exchange, NCB Foundation, and Junior Achievement Jamaica.
Steve Harvey, who has visited Jamaica several times, spoke of his love for the island on multiple occasions. His help does not come as a surprise, but it is much appreciated.
Several Jamaican entertainers have also sought to ease the digital divide burdens since the move to online learning. In October 2020, Ding Dong donated tablets to children in his native community of Nannyville. In November 2020, Dancehall princess, Shenseea donated 100 tablets to students in need, and earlier this year, Bounty Killer and his manager, Paul Giscombe, through the Bounty Foundation, donated 40 tablets to the Seaview Gardens Primary School as part of the artiste’s Each One, Teach One Initiative.