US-based group helping Grenada, Caribbean Penn Relays’ athletes

Posted by at 14 April, at 17 : 57 PM Print

New York, April 14, 2013 – The Grenada team participating in this month’s Penn Relays in the United States will receive sponsorship support from the US-based Team Jamaica Bickle (TJB).

Since 1994, TJB has played a leading role in the development, care and hospitality of Jamaican and other Caribbean athletes attending the games at the University of Pennsylvania.

TJB’s assistance helps to reduce costs for the visiting regional athletes, coaches and families.

Last year, for the first time ever, Grenada was represented at the Penn Relays by an athletic team from Westerhall Secondary School.

About 22,000 athletes – including competitors from Grenada, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and St. Vincent & the Grenadines – are expected to attend this year’s Penn Relays from April 25-27.

“It’s a big tent, and an even bigger Caribbean presence, at these relays,’’ said Irwine Clare, head of operations and TJB founder. “We are happy to see the numbers from the region grow as other countries embrace this platform for their athletes.’’

In preparation for the Penn Relays, TJB’s New York and Philadelphia Chapters are holding a series of activities including an awards’ and fundraising event on Tuesday, April 16, in Brooklyn.

Among those to be honoured are former Grenada Consul General Derrick James; Jamaican Olympian Deon Hemmings-McCatty; businesswoman Colette Cyrus-Burnett; and Vincentian G.S. O’Brien Simmons, founder of the Bequia United Progressive Organization.

Another fundraiser, in support of the TJB-back Caribbean athletes, is being organized for April 20 by the Jamaica Ex-Passport and Immigration Officers’ Association.

“I would like to extend commendations and appreciation to Team Jamaica Bickle for the unwavering support to the Jamaican athletes and the athletes of other Caribbean nations at the Penn Relays,’’ said James.

The former Grenada Consul General, in congratulating TJB on its efforts, said the organization has “embodied the principle that sports is not just games but about life, since talent is not the only competency that makes a great athlete. The skills of passion, dedication and motivation will get an athlete to the top; however, the support from organizations like yours is critical in the cultivation of character to keep them there.’’

James expressed confidence that TJB’s outreach “will continue to produce the greatness that the world has seen from Usain Bolt and Kirani James.”

TJB has attributed its own success over the years to support from corporate and individual friends and sponsors, as well as from “lifetime partner, Vincent HoSang/Caribbean Food Delights and the Vincent HoSang Family Foundation’’.

“We are neighbors, school-mates, parishioners and friends, here in the Diaspora. There is no greater feeling than knowing that we can find the things that connect us as Caribbean people and rally around them,” said Andrea Daley, public relations officer of TJB.


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