Kingston, October 29 – The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, says her Ministry is working with the Commonwealth Secretariat to develop a programme to measure the contribution of sport to Jamaica’s development.
According to Minister Grange, “there is enough talk about how important sport is for career advancement, crime reduction, unified communities, wealth creation, behaviour modification and healthy lifestyle” but not enough data to measure its impact.
Minister Grange was speaking at a Stakeholder’s Forum organised by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on Monday at which she introduced Mr Oliver Dudfield, Head of Sport Development and Peace at the Commonwealth Secretariat, who will lead the revision of the National Sport Policy.
The National Sport Policy is designed to foster greater participation in sport, promote intellectual and physical health, enhance social and economic well-being, create a healthier and more productive labour force and stimulate greater avenues for economic development while fostering a society of social cohesion by building bridges of friendship at all levels of the Jamaican society.
The review will focus on sport and non-sport objectives of the policy towards national development.
“Sport helps us to achieve local and national objectives – but to what extent? We have to seriously look at how we measure the value of sport in bringing about the non- sport outcomes we seek. How do we measure the linkages and connections both qualitatively and quantitatively?
“Without the evidenced-based information we will continue to be shortchanged and the requisite investments and recognition of the centrality of sport will continue to be underestimated to our detriment as a nation,” the Minister said.
Minister Grange said the Forum is the first in a series of consultations, training workshops and planning meetings to revisit the National Sport Policy, which is now in its fifth year.