Marie Cunningham-Clarke, FRSA, was elected the new President of the International Proxy Parents (IPP) at the Annual General Meeting held at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston in June 2016.
A former CEO of the Creative Production and Training Centre (CPTC) in Kingston, Mrs Cunningham-Clarke comes to the presidency with a wide range of skills gained from over 30 years experience as a communications specialist, media management consultant, music educator and trainer in England and Jamaica. She is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), England.
Marie’s rise in IPP began while serving on IPP’s Community Projects Committee (CPC) where she was actively involved in the club’s major fundraising event – The International Bazaar, held annually in November. She also helped initiate a Music Project for children residing at Maxfield Park Children’s Home to teach them drumming. During her years as Chair of the Public Relations Committee, she raised the profile of the organisation, publicizing the excellent work IPP has been doing for over 35 years, giving scholarships to financially challenged students in high schools, helping to refurbish state-run Children’s homes and taking the youngsters on beach outings and to theatre performances every year.
Earlier this year, in response to a growing concern about the poor parenting skills evident across the country, Cunningham-Clarke, in collaboration with the Violence Prevention Alliance (VPA) and the Peace Management Initiative (PMI) spearheaded IPP’s first Public Forum on Positive Parenting held at the University of the West Indies during Child Month 2016. Over 100 community and youth leaders attended the event.
A mother of three grown children, Cunningham-Clarke firmly believes that it is important to inculcate positive values in our youth, in order to build self-esteem, foster the development of civic pride and provide training and impetus for leadership development to benefit the whole society.
“IPP intends to continue assisting less fortunate children in Jamaica, encourage positive parenting and in collaboration with like-minded organisations achieve even greater results”, she said.