In a historic and heartwarming gesture, the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) announced today, Monday, August 28, that they will be rewarding the stellar achievements of Jamaica’s netball players with JMD$1 million each (about USD$6000) for their triumphant performance at the Netball World Cup, where they clinched the bronze medal.
The JOA’s rewarding initiative encompasses a comprehensive approach, aiming to not only honor the team’s success but also contribute to their future financial stability. Each player from the bronze medal-winning team will receive JMD$1 million from a joint reward from Supreme Ventures Limited and Mayberry Investments.
The JMD$13 million in rewards will go towards funding investment accounts at Mayberry Investments for each medallist. The funds will be under management at Mayberry Investments for a period of three years or until the athlete’s retirement from netball, whichever comes earlier.
The announcement, made at the JOA headquarters on Cunningham Avenue in Kingston on Monday, August 28, marks a momentous occasion as the JOA has never before rewarded a team and their coach for their exceptional performances. Following the Tokyo Olympics, the JOA had rewarded the track and field athletes a total of JMD$45 million.
This unprecedented decision is a testament to the remarkable journey and victories of the Jamaican netball team. Over the years, they have showcased their prowess, securing victories like the CAC gold, which ultimately culminated in their monumental success at the Netball World Cup.
Ryan Foster, General Secretary of the JOA, expressed the significance of this moment and the association’s pride in the team’s accomplishments:
“Today, the Jamaica Olympic Association celebrates and acknowledges your achievements on the court but we also want to reward them. We have watched with pride over the years of the success and progress made by our Sunshine Girls and are elated that we have been a part of that journey along with our partners SVL and Mayberry.”
Foster recounted the dedication of the team and the vital role that the JOA, along with its partners, played in supporting the sport’s resurgence after the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic:
“I remember when President (Tricia) Robinson came to us seeking ways to restart the sport after COVID and the most important goal was to get the Elite League and the National League going, and the JOA along with SVL and Marathon have invested over JMD$9 million in the restart of the Netball leagues.”
Highlighting the team’s historic accomplishments, Mr. Foster emphasized that the bronze medal at the World Cup was the perfect culmination of their remarkable journey:
“Following upon the Commonwealth Games, Caribbean Games, and CAC, all historic performances, it was only fitting that the icing on the cake was the World Cup. The JOA and our partners salutes you and your contribution to Jamaican pride, sports prowess, and generally being great ambassadors of not only yourselves but also of the JOA and our partners.”
Acknowledging the pivotal role of Coach Connie Francis, Mr. Foster announced a reward of JMD$2 million for her extraordinary leadership.
“For the signal work done by Coach Connie Francis, the JOA will reward the coach extraordinaire with an amount of $2 million,” Foster said.
Recognizing the strength of their netball family, the JOA extended a helping hand to Latanya, contributing $1M towards her recovery. Wilson recently lost her home and all her personal belongings including her trophies and medals when arsonists set her home on fire.
“It is in times of distress and crisis that we see the heart of our family, and Latanya, you are family. With that said, the JOA will contribute JMD$1 million towards your road to recovery.”
As the JOA, SVL, and Mayberry unite to celebrate the achievements of the Sunshine Girls, Foster assured that the journey is far from over, with the promise of continuous collaboration and support.
“Life is what you make it. Journeys are made to be explored and memories last a lifetime. Your memorable accomplishments have warmed our hearts, and similarly, when you were to restart the sport, we will continue the journey hand in hand, a marriage that won’t be broken.”
Foster extended gratitude to SVL and Mayberry for their partnership and dedication to the athletes’ success, foreshadowing further exciting announcements as the journey towards the Olympic year continues.