TORONTO — On Dec. 3, 2020 the Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation team suffered a terrible loss. Founding Board member Denise Jones, died in her Brampton, ON home, surrounded by family, after a fierce battle with cancer.
In light of this devastating news, HHJF says it has chosen to dedicate the funds raised during its ‘Lend a Helping Hand’ capital campaign, launched Dec. 14, to build the Goodwill Early Childhood Learning Center in Portland Jamaica, where Denise grew up, to commemorate her incredible spirit and dedication.
The Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation was founded by Karl Hale, who paid tribute to Denise’s dedication.
Denise was instrumental in the development of Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation and served on the Board tirelessly for over almost 15 years, said Hale. Her passion to support the children of Jamaica by providing much needed access to education in the most vulnerable communities was inspirational.
“She was one of our most dedicated champions and a pillar of strength and guidance for so many of us. Denise leaves us with a legacy of giving and caring, we will move that forward through each nail we hammer and every brush stroke we paint,” said Hale. “We hope the community will unite with us and help raise funds to make this school build in her honour become a reality.”
Once complete the Goodwill Early Childhood Learning Center will create a lasting and meaningful legacy honouring Denise, he added. The ‘Lend a Helping Hand’ campaign will also fill a sizeable fundraising void created by COVID-19.
The reality of the pandemic has forced HHJF to cancel its largest annual fundraising gala, in what would have been its 15th year. The foundation is grateful to its existing partners, the Jamaica Tourist Board, Kisko Products, Packall Packing, Ingredion, and Acosta along with many others who allowed their sponsorship funds to become direct donations, however the need is still great, says Hale. The goal of the capital campaign is to raise the remaining $100,000 needed by Jan. 14, 2021 in order to build the 24th school.
Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation is currently accepting donations as it pursues its vision of dedicating a school in memory of Denise. Donations can be made here.