Making a Difference in Bluefields
In the 20th century, Bluefields has been a fishing and farming community with almost no development. As it was beyond the telephone lines until the mid-1990s, “development” happily slowed to a crawl. Although Bluefields now has telephone lines, DSL, and even wireless at these five distinctive villas, there has still been no real commercialism. The community hopes for the area to be designated a Protected Zone so it remains Jamaica’s special hidden jewel…
In 1990, a Jamaican who was raised in England returned to Jamaica hoping to contribute to his native land. He ventured to Bluefields, and saw that he could make a difference in the lives of people in this rural community. He founded the BPCA (Bluefields’ Peoples Community Association) which spearheads environmental, educational, and vocational endeavors. The group is now a prototype for community organizations across the island.
In spite of the progress brought by telephone service, Bluefields has a serious shortage of jobs and housing which is why Bluefields Bay Villas does its best to hire local residents.
Enjoying this distinctive natural location is a true gift, and we recognize that is only right if gifts are given back to the community. Bluefields Bay’s Community Fund that is a part of rental payments is what sustains the local Basic School for early-childhood education, funds an ongoing anti-littering campaign, built Belmont’s new architect-designed “refuse collection center”, repaired a catchment tank providing water supply for the mountain town of Bog, often tests Bluefields Bay seawater (excellent results so far!!!) and more.
You may hope to contribute more, or you may want a personal experience with residents of this authentic and natural place. Please speak to us about what you might do to make a difference. These are examples from folks who left their mark on Bluefields:
- Bob Owen donated 22 Dell computers and the networking to the BPCA (Bluefields Peoples’ Community Association) in 1998. His gift enabled the BPCA to secure loans for a successful computer-training program that has been in place for years.
- The Brand Family works in the Basic School classrooms during each visit. Once they truly understood the needs of the school, their daughter raised money to buy fencing so that it now has a safe playground for the small students.
- In the “early days,” Mike Benigno brought with him an acute awareness about the environment and the ills of littering that was way ahead of the time in Jamaica. He deserves to be very proud of the consciousness-raising that he brought to Bluefields.