THE once well-equipped Diamond Village community centre is now home to rats, snakes, roaches and insects. The centre which boasted a computer room, modern kitchen facilities and a furnished auditorium, is now stripped of furniture and other equipment.
PRO of the village council Zameer Rahaman said that in 2010, council members repaired and repainted the centre. However, thieves made away with computers and kitchen appliances. “They stole everything including electrical wires,” Rahaman said.
Today the centre stands in the middle of the village in a dilapidated condition. Rahaman said the community centre served more than 3,000 people in Diamond Village. Among those in the village are several who were employed by the now-defunct Petrotrin.
“There are many who are seeking skill training in wood-works, cooking, baking, sewing and other courses that the government is offering at this time,” Rahaman said. The youths and adults, he said, from the village must now go into San Fernando, Penal and Debe for skills training.
He said the Diamond Village Community Council is publicly calling on Community Development, Culture and Arts Minister Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly to have the community centre renovated and brought to a standard where it can serve a useful purpose to the community.
Last June, the council wrote to the Community Development office in San Fernando asking for assistance in reviving the centre. “We did not get any answer, but we are hoping that officers will visit the centre and file a proper report to the minister herself,” Rahaman said.
Over the years, Rahaman added, the community center has been at the centre of many major activities such as Independence Day celebrations, Christmas treats, Divali celebrations and numerous sports, family day and movie nights.