VM Wealth Management Ltd has stepped up to provide significant support to Jamaican creative practitioners through an official partnership with the Jamaica Reggae Industry Association (JaRIA). The wealth-building arm of the VM Group will provide financial and logistical support for the association’s series of activities throughout the year and will also provide focused financial education and guidance to help Creatives thrive financially.
The partnership kicked off with sponsorship of this year’s staging of JaRIA’s Honour Awards, held on Sunday (April 17), which included the presentation of the VM Wealth Breakthrough Artiste of the Year Award, copped by reggae performer Jo Benée ‘Joby Jay’ Morris, best known for her ‘Big Girl Ting’ hit. In addition to her award, Joby Jay was also gifted with a $50,000 gift certificate for a VM Wealth Unit Trust Portfolio.
The event was hosted at VM’s Half-Way Tree Road location and honoured the exceptional contribution of over 30 reggae industry stalwarts and icons in 16 categories. This included musicians, songwriters, engineers, bands as well as media that have contributed to the impact of the sector.
Rezworth Burchenson, CEO of VM Wealth, said the collaboration is particularly critical now as the entity seeks to energise its support of creative practitioners to help them develop better financial management skills.
“The creative industry is a key driver of growth in our country and I am proud we are leading the charge here at VM Wealth for this sector to have inclusion and for practitioners to be able to transform their lives, through building wealth for themselves and their families,” he said.
Established in 2009, JaRIA was a driving force behind the establishment of Reggae Month as an annual celebration. It was also an important partner in the successful inclusion of Reggae music on UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
JaRIA Honour awardees included Michael ‘Mikie’ Bennett, for his songwriting contribution to the reggae industry, while Yaksta walked away with the Song of the Year award for his hit single ‘Ambition’.
In celebration of Jamaica’s 60th Independence, cultural pioneers – reggae icon Bob Marley, National Hero Marcus Garvey and poet Louise ‘Miss Lou’ Bennett-Coverley were also honoured with the Diamond Jubilee Awards.