The odds are stacked against 17-year-old Shelly-Ann Rose. She lives in the underserved community of Rose Hall in Clarendon, where the possibility of violence looms every day as scores of unattached youths roam the streets.
But the Foga Road High School student, Shelly-Ann Rose, is determined to live her dream of being a top-class fashion designer.
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Rose Hall is sandwiched between Free Town and Sandy Bay, and last week, residents underscored the need for urgent intervention before the unattached youngsters become attracted to a life of crime.
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For Shelly-Ann, that criminal path is one that she has no intention of taking. She is now waiting for the results of the CSEC subjects that she sat recently, after which she is planning to enrol at the Portmore Community College (Old Harbour campus) to pursue an arts degree as part of her plan to conquer the fashion world.
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“Financially, I’m not balanced. Right now, it’s just faith,” said the teen who is not prepared to give up
According to Shelly-Ann, the road to completing her secondary education was not an easy one as she had to get up very early and take the 25-minute trek from where her home is located to the main road to get a vehicle to take her to school
Strong Support From Mom
She is receiving strong support from her mother, who, daily, makes several trips to the standpipe, the sole source of potable water in the community, to meet the needs of the family
“It’s really challenging for her as she also has to carry water for her own needs, too,” said Shelly-Ann as she lamented the lack of opportunity for young people in the area
“They need something to do, and it would be great if there was a nearby training centre,” said Shelly-Ann, who enjoys writing poems and short stories when she is not designing and making outfits