Bob Marley Foundation and GraceKennedy Cares team up to open Marley Music Room at school in Kingston

September 20, 2016

From Jamaica Observer: Inner-city youths across Kingston, Jamaica are set to benefit from the opening a new “Marley Music Room” at the GraceKennedy/Parade Gardens STEM Centre in downtown Kingston. The project is a collaborative partnership between the Bob Marley Foundation and GraceKennedy Cares, and was furnished at a cost of J$1.5 million.

In his address at the opening ceremony, Minister of Education, Youth and Information Ruel Reid said the provision of musical instruments and music instructors is a progressive move towards the improvement of teaching and learning.


“We recognise in education that children learn through different approaches and means. A child who might be considered slow in math or the sciences may very well excel in music and so a smart teacher will use that love for music to excite the child’s interest in other subjects,” Senator Reid said.

The minister argued that the process of teaching and learning has to be creative, where children become excited about the process and make efforts to go to school so that they can learn.


He said with the gift of the music room, it is hoped that children will simply love school and work hard and become successful.

Reid cited the successes gained with the First Global Bank’s music in education programme. First Global is a member of the GraceKennedy Group of companies.

“Children’s improved access to musical experiences resulted in greater motivation to learning (with) 90 per cent improvement in the status of literacy and numeracy in the classes in which the project is implemented,” he noted.

Reid said the effective practices were duplicated in the wider educational system, resulting in a greater number of students becoming literate and numerate and fully prepared to access secondary education at the end of their primary studies.

“We wish the staff and students who use this music room success in the teaching and learning activities,” he said.

For her part, General Manager of the Bob Marley Foundation, Marie Bruce, said the music room is the brainchild of Cedella Marley, daughter of the late reggae superstar, Bob Marley.


She also expressed appreciation to the GraceKennedy Group for assisting to bring the project to fruition.

Chairman of the Grace and Staff Community Development Foundation, James Moss-Solomon, said the presence of the music room is a way forward for many young people.

“In addition to the music that they teach here, we will also teach people what goes behind the music. We hope to take this forward to teach young people how to set up quickly on the stage and how to check things beforehand, so that everything goes smoothly,” Moss-Solomon said.

The music room is equipped with a variety of musical instruments, including guitars, drums, keyboards and recorders.

The facility aims to develop the students’ music skills and lay the foundation for further educational and vocational development. Music lessons will be delivered by the Alpha Institute.

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