Jamaica holds a special place in my heart. First my father is from Jamaica and we've been traveling to Jamaica since we were young. But only until the the last few years have I been looking at Jamaica through different eyes…
I took some time to not visit as a “tourist” but I spent some time learning more and getting to know the economy, the people and the opportunities – and it was disheartening with what I learned.
The biggest shock to me was that a college graduates average salary is $425 USD a month, yes, a month… that was not a typo. A friend of mine works at a local grocery store and makes $50 a week, for full time work, that is $200 a month.
Keep in mind, the cost of living there is not that much different than the states. You would think that with such low salaries, it would be dirt cheap to live there, but its not, a lot of things cost just about the same. yes you can rent rooms or live in tin homes for cheap… but.. it's not necessarily a cheap place to live. If they want to buy anything, they save their money for months if not years.
If you've ever been to one of the resorts there, the average resort worker makes about $350 a month. If you've been to one of the resorts, you've probably met the guys there that are selling tour excursions, they only make about $3 commission on each sale, with no base salary. Talk about pressure to just eat for the day! The top sales person makes about $300 a month.
I could go on forever with examples….
So, my sister and I decided that we wanted to do something about it. So, about 2 months ago we went to Jamaica and did a 2 day workshop teaching people who don't even know how to copy and paste – to having a fully functioning website at the end of the second day.
I can't tell you how rewarding and amazing that event was.
Well, I am back in Jamaica this weekend and doing follow up sessions with the group. We are hoping to get them started on the Internet with freelancing opportunities. They are a very skilled bunch, and the opportunities in Jamaica are just so limited. we truly believe that if the people of that country are going to change their financial future, they will do it leveraging the power of the internet and a global economy!
It will be Internet Entrepreneurs that change the country.. you just wait and see…
Anyway, we will keep you posted and share with you some of the success stories!