NICE Christmas Programme Begins
As part of a government sponsored community clean-up programme teams of workers are spending 7-18 December working to clear beach accesses, clean beaches and cemeteries, improve road markings, support solid waste management, and help the elderly in their yards
Two hundred and fifty-seven new participants and 431 returning participants registered last week for the Christmas National Community Enhancement Programme, also known as the NiCE initiative, online and at five locations across Grand Cayman.
Organisers expressed their gratitude to local churches and the public library system for hosting registration, allowing the event to be held seamlessly at multiple locations for the first time. This change from previous years was to comply with the current COVID-19 prevention regulations that prohibit gatherings of more than 500 people. They also thanked the RCIPS who provided security and Justices of the Peace who were on hand to verify identity documents.
On 7 December workers reported to teams led by various Government departments and public authorities. Taking part again this year are the Department of Agriculture, on behalf of the Agriculture Society; Mosquito Research and Control Unit; National Roads Authority; Public Works and the Department of Environmental Health.
Individual agencies hosted special orientations for the temporary workers on health and safety, including COVID-19 precautions.
Participation in the NiCE programme is limited to Caymanians and spouses of Caymanians who are 18 years and older and unemployed.
Minister for Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure Hon Joey Hew said he was pleased to announce that participants will also be offered a second two weeks of work in early January.
“NiCE was developed to offer temporary employment to persons in a way that participants and community members could see and feel the benefits of their contributions. Given the economic challenges faced by the Cayman Islands in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the additional financial strains that the holiday season can pose, Cabinet felt it was absolutely essential to provide this programme before the end of the year”, Mr Hew said.
While NiCE has previously been held in the summer and winter this is the first programme for 2020, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.