Member of Parliament for West Kingston Desmond McKenzie says that the annual Christmas treats for the elderly and children in his constituency will be the biggest in recent times.
Speaking exclusively with Jamaica Today, the two-time MP in the long standing Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) seat says that with additional sponsorship this year, his team is delighted to cater to over 6,000 elderly and children from communities in and outside of West Kingston.
“We are able to do [bigger Christmas treats] because of the increase in sponsorship we have gotten from well-meaning persons, who over the years continue to support this very worthy effort,” he said. Mr. McKenzie was speaking on Wednesday, November 28 at the Youth Mayors’ Luncheon at the Spanish Court Hotel in St Andrew.
According to McKenzie, the Christmas treats in West Kingston are one of the longest-running in the country and it is important that he carries on the tradition.
“It is important to me because we are continuing a tradition that was started from 1963, when Mr. (Edward) Seaga in his first year as Member of Parliament introduced a treat for senior citizens, followed by one for the children,” McKenzie told Jamaica Today.
The Christmas treat for the elderly takes place on Friday, December 21 with five concurrent children’s treats happening across the constituency on Saturday, December 22.
Mr. McKenzie told Jamaica Today he was proud that the annual elderly treats continue to cater to his constituency’s most vulnerable members, but also draws a massive turnout with participants from neighbouring areas.
“Last year we provided for some 2,000 elderlies, this year, we’re pushing the number up to 3,000. It’s not only those who are shut-in and vulnerable from West Kingston, but you have persons who come from all over, to the community centre in Tivoli on that day – and in order not to turn anyone away, we are increasing the numbers,” he noted.
By: Gavin Riley