Courage, strength, compassion, and service guide our vision to positively connect our youth to their communities, to encourage, empower and equip them to become useful citizens of the future.
To forge social and economic partnerships between our children and various private and public-sector corporations resulting in:
* Improved access to affordable health care
* Increased tuition aid
* Improved ties with local and international community-based organizations and elected officials
* To provide leadership to promote and implement mentoring programs
Children of Jamaica Outreach – COJO an engine for community development was founded in 1994 on the principle of creating opportunities through wide-ranging social development programs. COJO is a nonprofit organization that seeks to undertake projects of support and to give relief to disadvantaged children in Jamaica as well as the United States. COJO’s values are built on the foundation that children are our greatest asset and must be provided with services that will improve their existing conditions.
COJO is an offshoot of the name, CUDJOE, leader of a band of Maroons, who rebelled against British slavery in 19th Century Jamaica. Captain Cudjoe was a proud warrior who took a stand against colonial oppression and fought the British for the freedom of his people. No match for the valiant Cudjoe, the British succumbed to the daily onslaughts of the Maroons, and eventually signed a peace treaty allowing this group of Maroons to lead normal, productive lives in the hilly interiors of northwest Jamaica.
In this regard, COJO exemplifies duty, courage, strength and commitment in championing the cause of needy children in both the national and international arenas.
Spanning the shores of the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea from the cosmopolitan neighborhood of Queens, New York to the vibrant melting pot of Jamaica, a network of dedicated individuals are working to improve the lives of under-served children.
Through sheer drive and enduring persistence, COJO, a 501(c)(3) charity, has raised and donated funds to several non-government agencies.
· US$1,500 to The Alpha Boys’ Home, over
· US$7,000 to Marigold Child-Care Centre,
· US$32,000 plus Tommy Hilfiger clothing worth approximately US$5,000 as well as 15 wheelchairs to Glenhope Nursery for physically-challenged children.
· With COJO’s support, Glenhope has also completed the construction of a children’s library.
. US$4,000 to Alpha Boys Home and the City of Refuge as scholarships
The United States
COJO sponsors Project Helping Hands at the YMCA in Jamaica, Queens New York and has so far contributed US$2,500. This is an after-school program providing homework help and social activities to keep the youngsters occupied between 4 and 6pm.
COJO is actively involved with the Leaf of Life organization in New York City, which transports critically-ill children from various countries around the globe to the United States for life-saving surgery. So far they have received a donation of US$4,100.
Since its launch, COJO has successfully enlisted the support and sponsorship of several major companies -- Air Jamaica, American Airlines, British Airways, Estee Lauder, JetBlue Airways, Newsday, Sandals resorts, SuperClubs Resorts, Tommy Hilfiger, Transcontinental Shippers and Western Union. Many of these are sponsors of the annual COJO Charity Ball, proceeds of which benefit the service organizations catering to the needs of the under-served children.
COJO welcomes its new partners Michael C. Fina Company and Virgin Atlantic Airways
COJO is the brainchild of Jamaica’s Gary Williams who has received several awards in recognition and honor of his dedication and commitment to eradicate social deprivation among our children.
Officially recognized by the Government of Jamaica, the organization has been cited for its humanitarian work. In August 2003 Williams was honored at the Jamaican Independence Ball held in New York and received the Consul General’s Award for his charitable work to the Jamaican community both in New York and in Jamaica.
Like its namesake, COJO affirms an allegiance to its own and an obligation to serve. It continues to stretch across boundaries and impact lives daily.