Monday, 20 April 2015
AMERICAN COUPLE DONATES 39 HOUSES TO NEEDY FAMILIES IN McCOOK’S PEN - News Release - April 17, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Kingston, Jamaica – April 17, 2015: Thirty-nine families of McCook’s Pen in St. Catherine have received houses from Food For The Poor (FFP) Jamaica in collaboration with overseas donors, Marvin and Ellie Walworth.
The Walworth couple from Grand Junction, Colorado, along with their family and friends overseas, pooled their funds for the construction of the houses for needy Jamaicans in the community of McCook’s Pen.
The 39 houses were officially handed over on April 15, after which the area was renamed ‘The Walworth Family Village’ in honour of the donors.
Marvin stated that he and his wife were proud to have been able to donate 39 houses. He said the wonderful idea of constructing the houses started 10 years ago, when a priest named Fr. Dave Delich visited the Walworth couple’s home and shared the idea of building homes for needy individuals.
“The whole idea came together after we visited Jamaica in 2013 and saw many needs that existed in this community. When we first came, all that there was here was open land with a few trees scattered on it. Today, we have a village. Today, we are driving into a community and it looks even better than we had anticipated,” Marvin said.
David Mair, Executive Director, FFP Jamaica, expressed gratitude on behalf of the housing recipients and his charity organisation, to the Walworth couple.
“Food For The Poor is extremely proud to be partnering with such a remarkable couple. I extend sincere gratitude to the Walworth’s, as well as their family and friends, for thinking of the poor in such a tangible way,” Mair said during his remarks.
He further stated that, “In 2013, the Walworths visited the community, saw the destitution and decided to do something about it. This is a testimony of God’s goodness and His ability to uplift the poor through the generosity of others. It is God’s goodness which led Ellie and Marvin Walworth, along with their friends, to donate 39 houses to the residents of McCook’s Pen.”
Patricia Stevens and Donna Thomas were two happy recipients of houses.
According to Stevens, termites infested her previous home, which resulted in it falling apart.
“I am a very proud recipient because my house tear down with me and mi children dem. Everybody know dat ‘chi chi’ and board nuh work together, and my house was made of board, so the termites dem tek it ova. Because of Food For The Poor and the Walworths, mi daughter now have a house from this project and me get one before. I am so happy. This village will be an example in St Catherine and Jamaica,” Stevens said during an interview.
While expressing her gratitude, Thomas said, “I am very overwhelmed at this moment. I am bursting with joy knowing that my husband and I are now proud home owners. We have been struggling for years, and God has rewarded us with a house. I want to say thanks to the Walworths and to Food For The Poor. It is wonderful to know that there are still good people in the world.”
The Walworth couple also funded the construction of a community center where residents can learn entrepreneurial and technical skills. Land for the construction of the houses was donated by The Sugar Company of Jamaica.
In 2014, FFP Jamaica built 1,601 houses across the island. Since the charity organisation’s inception, over 38,000 Jamaicans have received a secure and comfortable place to call home.
For more information, please contact:
Ainsworth Morris, PROComm. Tel: 926-6740 or 375-6136
Petri-Ann Henry, Public Relations Officer, Food For The Poor Jamaica. Cell: 564-2886