Jamaica-Nebraska Exchange 2017

Year: 2017
Country: United States
Project Status: Funded
Impact Sector: Health
Project Investment: $1,000.00

Project Launch: 9-1-17

This project aims to fill the air of middle America with reggae vibrations. Through food, music and fellowship, project leader, Adam, will bring Jamaican culture to residents of Lincoln, NE, supported by a non-profit he founded, Mystic River productions.

Now based in Lincoln, NE, MRP works to promote positive educational opportunities, healthy lifestyles and community service opportunities to the residents it serves. Recent projects include supporting educational opportunities for young girls, developing local community gardens, supporting PCV and RPCV work in Jamaica, Nicaragua and Zambia and providing healthy lifestyle opportunities to youth participating in local summer programs.

This grant will support a series of activities to engage local community members with cross-cultural experiences inspired by Peace Corps service. The central component of the project will be a Jamaican-themed community event, "Pon de Road: Jamaica Night in Lincoln”. This event is designed to promote Lincoln community members’ connection to and understanding of other cultures. It will also serve as MRP's annual fundraiser. There will be food (jerk chicken and cup soup) and a local deejay will play Jamaican music (reggae, dancehall, oldtime) throughout the night. There will be games and information about MRP.

This project will educate, inspire, and empower the community and its youth acutely and long-term. In the short term, Lincoln residents will be positively impacted by making global connections in the fun and casual atmosphere of Jamaica Night. Young people will be encouraged to attend the event and many event activities are planned to encourage family attendance and participation. Long-term, MRP will have the resources needed to expand its Lincoln-based community programs. Through funds raised at the event and future product sales, MRP will be able to expand its community involvement through projects such as youth education programs, healthy living activities and community service promotion.

Project Update:

Pon de Road: Jamaica Night in Lincoln was a huge success! With a 40% increase in attendance and a 20% increase in funds raised from the previous year. 

Food was used to introduce Lincoln residents to Jamaican culture! Three local food establishments came together to create Nebraska-Jamaica fusion food. Each "fusion food station" highlighted the Jamaican dish, significance to Jamaican culture, and how it had been modified with Nebraska flavor. 

Check out MRP's Jamaican-inspired food product line!

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