The Buffalo Jamaica Innovation Enterprise consists of leaders of
the University at Buffalo, the National Association of Jamaican and
Supportive Organizations (NAJASO), the Jamaican and American
Association of Buffalo (JAAB) and the City of Buffalo working
together to connect Buffalo with Jamaica fostering collaboration in
health care and information technology projects.
From the Start: In January 2013, a one-day meeting, chaired by Dr. Gene Morse, SUNY Distinguished Professor, took place at the University at Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences with multiple presentations related to the proposed program between Buffalo and Jamaica. The attendees included leadership of the National Association of Jamaican and Supportive Organizations (NAJASO), the Jamaica American Association of Buffalo and the City of Buffalo. Buffalo health care business leaders were also present. The meeting concluded with discussions that created a framework for the planning of the Buffalo Jamaica Innovation Enterprise.
Core Committee: A Core Committee was formed that included Dr. Morse, Dr. Charles Anderson, Sr, MD and Ms. Beverly Joy on a weekly basis throughout 2013, 2014 and up to the present in 2015. Dr. Anderson is an ex officio member of the Jamaica Ministry of Health Think Tank and Advisory Group on mobilizing support for health from the Jamaica Diaspora. Dr. Anderson is the co-founder of Project Respect and the National Medical Association, Buffalo Chapter. As a member of Caribbean Medical Mission and HELP Jamaica Medical Mission, he has provided free medical care throughout the Caribbean. Dr. Anderson is the Chairman of the Board of the Jamaican and American Association of Buffalo, a member organization of NAJASO. Mrs. Joy is an Executive Committee member of the Board of the Jamaican and American Association of Buffalo.
HEALTH NETWORK: VIRUS OUTBREAK DETECTION LINKING JAMAICA MEDICAL MISSIONS WITH BIOMETRICS AND TRANSLATIONAL BIOINFORMATICS
Background: Jamaica recently experienced an acute chikungunya virus outbreak. In addition, many patients are experiencing other acute infections (e.g. influenza), mosquito borne viruses (e.g. dengue), as well as chronic viral infections including HIV, HCV and HBV. The potential for detecting and treating ebola infection in individuals entering Jamaica is also a high priority for Jamaica public health officials.
One of the initial education and training initiatives will be the Jamaica Global Infectious Diseases Research Training Program (GIDRTP).
The WNY STEM Hub of the Empire State STEM Learning Network facilitates collaboration among business, education, community organizations, arts and cultural organizations, and government entities to advance the interdisciplinary teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics in support of sustained economic and intellectual vitality in our five-county region.
WNY will be a thriving economic region whose innovative workforce and citizenry are created through interdisciplinary STEM collaboration.
additional information on the WNY STEM Hub is available at: http://wnystem.org/
WNY STEM Hub meets with Jamaica Minister of Education: At a recent meeting with the Jamaica Minister of Education, representatives of WNY STEM and the Buffalo Jamaica Innovation Enterprise (BJIE) met to discuss the STEM initiative for Jamaica.
In addition to the visit to the Ministry of Education, Drs. Buchanan, Kavanaugh, Anderson and Whittaker also met with representatives of the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus School of Engineering. This is the first year of operation for this new four year program. Next year, it is anticipated that an engineering program will be established through the university that will employ students.
The Jamaican and American Association of Buffalo (JAAB), founded in 1989 in Buffalo, NY was the city’s heartfelt response to the devastation caused by Hurricane Gilbert. Jamaicans and their American counterparts came together as one to provide support for those whose lives had been altered by the hurricane’s effects. Since its inception, JAAB has provided solace to many people (both in the US and abroad) in the form of effective medical, educational, economic and cultural programs. JAAB, a member organization of the National Association of Jamaican and Supportive Organizations (a U.S. based 501c(3) non-profit organization), embodies the Jamaican National Seal's motto: Out of many, one people!
The National Association of Jamaican & Supportive Organizations, Inc. (NAJASO) is a non-profit, tax-exempt umbrella Association of Jamaicans and supporters throughout the United States and internationally. NAJASO was founded July 4, 1977, when representatives of Jamaican groups from across the United States of America met in Washington, DC and launched the national body to address immediate problems which primarily affected their communities in the United States.