Irwine Clare (left), founder and CEO of Team Jamaica Bickle, and Marvin Anderson, president of the Olympians Association of Jamaica, show off the documents after signing a memorandum of understanding at the National Stadium on Friday. Photo: Nicholas Nunes
Team Jamaican Bickle (TJB) founder and CEO Irwine Clare says that the organisation is entering a new phase of operation, involving concrete partnerships that will better serve local athletes.
Clare was speaking at the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between TJB and the Olympians Association of Jamaica (OAJ) which took place at the National Stadium on Friday. The five-year agreement seeks to foster opportunities to leverage corporate sponsorship that will benefit local athletes.
TJB has been providing assistance to Jamaican athletes in the United States, specifically high-school athletes at the Penn Relays, since its inception 26 years ago.
They had their fundraising activities halted this year because of the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent cancellation of the 2020 Penn Relays. However, Clare said that it gave the organisation an opportunity to streamline their partnership process in an official capacity.
“This was one such avenue that we felt was necessary, given the opportunity, that we begin to put more official structure into some of the things that we do,” Clare told The Sunday Gleaner. “What we are signing off on here are some things that we have been doing in an informal sense.”
According to Clare, he is proud of the growth made from just assisting young local athletes at Penn Relays to being able to bring local brand presence to the Penn Relays. He said that they will explore opportunities with other local sporting associations to continue such work.
“As we have formulated those relationships, we are going to have to look at how we structure our relationship with the various sporting arms in Jamaica,” he said.
OAJ President Marvin Anderson says that he sees countless opportunities to further the organisation’s mandate. He says that the core focus is on increasing membership and engagement with local athletes and Olympians.
“We need partnerships, and those partnerships can be used as leverage in ensuring that we can fulfil our mandate. TJB will be able to use their platform to leverage the association in order to garner the support that is needed to [service] our membership,” Anderson said. “It’s [The opportunities are] unlimited and the scope is very wide, but we will ensure that we get maximum benefits from [it].