GRAND BAHAMA, BAHAMAS — With the support of the Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited (GBPA), Genesis Academy will once again provide teaching and training to Grand Bahama’s teens.
Genesis Academy, located in the Children’s Village in Freeport, was devastated by floodwater during Hurricane Dorian in September 2019, destroying most of the interior, the roof and the students’ agriculture and aquaponics installation. With the work of GBPA’s reconstruction team and G&T Construction, restoration of the facility is now complete.
Ivan Butler, district superintendent for Grand Bahama, Bimini and the cays, said: “For more than twenty years, a partnership between the Ministry of Education and the Grand Bahama Port Authority has provided the opportunity for continuous education for students regardless of their challenges or circumstances.
“The Genesis Academy provides continuing education for at-risk boys and girls while they receive intensive counseling. The vision of Lady Henrietta St George in establishing this school has proven to be invaluable in providing a second chance for education amongst these students.”
The academy offers programming tailored to teens who are working to refocus on education and obtain their high school diplomas. Genesis-trained, specialized staff help students who are rehabilitating from delinquency, recovering from substance abuse and from other specialized needs that may not be addressed in a regular classroom. It offers small classes, low teacher-student ratios and provides students with individualized access to academic development, behavior therapy, social interaction and experiential training services.
Dr Ricardo Major, principal at Genesis Academy, said: “The facility’s restoration was a daunting task. But, thanks to the port authority, the work is done and the Genesis team is eager to welcome our students back.
“GBPA’s support has enabled us to provide specialized education that meets our students’ unique needs, and to offer after-school programs and projects that help guide them back into mainstream life.”
Sarah St George, GBPA acting chairman, said: “Every child deserves a second chance, and the Genesis Academy has provided support and much-needed attention and care to so many of Grand Bahama’s teens.
“Our youth are our future, and we must nurture their development — regardless of their challenges or transgressions. It will help them to become productive and contributing members of our communities.”
She added: “I’m delighted to resume this very successful partnership that the GBPA had with the Ministry of Education for the past 20 years and I’d like to thank the Ministry and Mr Ivan Butler for their continued commitment to the Genesis Academy.”
Butler added: “On behalf of the Ministry of Education, the Honorable Jeffrey Lloyd, Director Mr Marcellus Taylor and the many students that will benefit from this initiative, I extend sincere gratitude and appreciation to the Grand Bahama Port Authority for their assistance and partnership in making this day a reality.
“We look forward to a continued relationship with them. To this end, the Ministry of Education is pleased to announce that Genesis Academy will begin a gradual phase-in of students.
“We appreciate the value the Port Authority sees in our programme, and thank them for their faith in our ability to deliver the education, support and care that these students deserve.”