Special award to be given to a teacher and coach from the winning schools

GraceKennedy (GK), title sponsor of the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) Boys and Girls Athletic Championships (Champs), has announced that its investment in the annual junior track and field meet will exceed J$170 million this year. In addition to the J$82 million in cash sponsorship GK will be contributing to the 2023 staging of the popular event, GK’s Grace Foods, Western Union and First Global brands will also inject over J$90 million dollars into the local economy through their Champs executions.

GK’s 2023 investment will also include a special award of $250,000 each for a teacher and a coach from the winning Champs schools.

Group CEO of GraceKennedy, Don Wehby, commented, “We see the sacrifice and dedication our Jamaican teachers display every day and recognise the significant contribution they make to the success of Champs each year. This award is GK’s way of showing them our appreciation.”

GraceKennedy Group CEO Don Wehby (fourth from right), presents an J$82 million cheque to President of the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA), Keith Wellington (far left) for the 2023 ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls Championships (Champs). Also present for the cheque handover are (L-R) Minister of Education and Youth, Hon. Fayval Williams; CEO of GK Foods – Domestic, Frank James; CEO of GraceKennedy Money Services & GraceKennedy Financial Group, Grace Burnett; GK Brand Ambassador and sprinter, Briana Williams; Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange; Chairman of the Champs Committee, Richard Thompson; and President of First Global Bank, Radcliffe Daley.

With oversight from their schools’ administration, the top 2023 Champs boys’ and girls’ teams will be asked to nominate a teacher and a coach who they believe are deserving of the award.

GK will also offer a special digital award of J$500,000 to the boys’ and girls’ schools which break the most Champs records in 2023. The funds must go towards enhancing the schools’ digital curriculum. Wehby explained that as GK advances its own digital transformation strategy, the company is also supporting the development of digital skills in Jamaican youth. “Our Chief Information Officer, Deidre Cousins, has committed her support to the winning schools where needed, to help guide them in the best use of the funds,” he said.

Wehby continued, “For the past 16 years, Champs has been by far GK’s largest sponsorship in dollars and heart. It represents a powerful example of our commitment to investing in our schools, youth and in our country Jamaica.”

The 113th staging of the ISSA/GRACEKENNEDY Boys and Girls Championships will take place between March 28 to April 1 at the National Stadium in Kingston.