The IDB Civil Society Consulting Group in Jamaica

I am honoured to join a fantastic group of Jamaicans on the IDB’s Civil Society Consulting Group (ConSOC) in Jamaica. As a communications person, I am looking forward to helping facilitate an energetic and productive dialogue in support of the Bank’s key initiatives as we seek to place critical issues on the agenda for civil society and the government. It should be exciting work!

I took this photo two years ago, when this sign first went up – yes, it’s my “hood”!

By the way, the IDB recently held a Town Hall Meeting to discuss its new US$13 million headquarters in Kingston – IDB House, at 16 Montrose Road in Kingston – a stone’s throw from the historic Vale Royal building that is the Prime Minister’s official residence. I was happy to learn that the energy-efficient building is to be designed and built by Jamaican firmsAPEC Consultants Limited and West Indies Home Contractors Limited (WIHCON).

Here is the IDB’s press release:

July 16, 2017

IDB Appoints Gordon Swaby and Emma Lewis to its Civil Society Consulting Group in Jamaica

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is pleased to announce the appointment of technology innovator Gordon Swaby and public affairs blogger Emma Lewis as the newest members of the IDB’s Civil Society Consulting Group (ConSOC) in Jamaica.

The IDB supports the establishment of Civil Society Consulting Groups in each of its 28 member countries as a forum for dialogue and exchange with national civil society actors at the country level. These Civil Society Consulting Groups help the IDB to understand and analyze the role and contributions of civil society in the changing development process of its members countries. The recent appointments of Gordon Swaby and Emma Lewis in Jamaica are intended to broaden the IDB’s already diverse understanding of key development issues and through continuous engagement, contribute to a culture of communication between the IDB and civil society.

A blogger and writer with wide-ranging experience in the field of public affairs and communications, Emma Lewis currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica and the Natural History Museum of Jamaica. A member of BirdsCaribbean’s Media Working Group and BirdLife Jamaica, she previously served on the boards of J-FLAG and Eve for Life Jamaica.

Gordon Swaby is the Chief Executive Officer of the multiple award-winning non-governmental organization EduFocal Limited. EduFocal Limited is an online social learning community focused on using technology to enrich the learning experience outside of the classroom. In 2014, Gordon was recognized by the IDB as a leading innovator and travelled to Bahia, Brazil along with 9 other experts from Latin America and the Caribbean to present to the IDB’s Board of Governors and IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno.

“The IDB in Jamaica is very happy to appoint impactful change agents like Emma and Gordon to our ConSOC. Their unique experiences and expertise in their respective professional and development areas will augur well for the IDB’s commitment to understanding and facilitating the development process in Jamaica, which ultimately helps us to realize our vision to improve lives,” noted Therese Turner-Jones, the IDB’s Country Representative for Jamaica and the General Manager for its Caribbean Country Department.

Representing a wide range of sectors, other current members of the IDB’s Civil Society Consulting Group include: Omar Azan, Jermaine Case, Dennis Chung, Dr. Marcia Forbes, Dr. Carolyn Gomes, Jason Henzell, Debra Lopez-Spence, Diana McCaulay, Karen McDonald Gayle, Dr. Hopeton Morrison, Professor Trevor Munroe, Dr. Ruth Potopsingh and Milton Samuda.

3 thoughts on “The IDB Civil Society Consulting Group in Jamaica

    I feel obliged to share an excerpt (from my article “Prescription for an Ailing Nation”) of my thoughts on this subject.

    “Jamaica need a new generation of political leaders, and policies, that recognize Jamaica’s challenges, and search for and implement solutions so that the people can recognize their full potentials, and strive for excellence and a better lifestyle for themselves and country. For this concept to be effective, the people must always be engaged in some way with the decisions being made by the leaders that will directly have an impact on their lives.

    Re-introduce CIVICs & ETHICS in the education system.” This is particularly important. Thanks


    1. Thank you very much for this, Kenneth! I agree with you on all points. I am trying to keep note of all these very important suggestions. I thank you for following this blog and wish you all the best!


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