Port Antonio, Jamaica
Jamaica

Port Antonio, Jamaica Population (1991): 13,246

Dr. Greg Hill shows us the beach/ocean

Port Antonio is the capital city of the parish of Portland, which is located on the Northeastern coast of the country of Jamaica.  It is located about 60 miles Northeast of Kingston, Jamaica and 125 miles Southeast of Montego Bay, Jamaica.  The parish of Portland is named after the Duke of Portland, who was the Governor of Jamaica in 1723 when it became a parish.  The quiet coastal village started to become a boom town in the 1880s with the development of the coconut and banana trades.  Soon after, wealthy American tourists started to flock to Port Antonio.  The glamour of Port Antonio was intensified by Hollywood in a number of movies including The Mighty Quinn and Cocktail.  Today, Port Antonio is the island's third largest port, but like the rest of Jamica it is extremely impoverished.  This leaves many individuals unable to afford eye exams and glasses, which lends itself to our services.

Just like any other successful mission trip, there are many people behind the scenes that make this trip not only possible, but a huge success.  In the trip's early years, the local Lions Club hosted the trip using the local hospital, but one year they were unable to secure the hospital for the mission and were forced to find other means.  That year, they moved the mission to a cement block public health building with an open courtyard area.  The Lions Club hosted at least one more mission before combining with the local Rotary Club to host our group.   Eventually the Lions Club dropped out, and we have been hosted by the local Rotary Club ever since.  Our last few missions have been held at a private office building owned by a local physician.  Below you can find pictures of the Rotary Members and South Dakota VOSH members working hard.

Vosh worker chats with Jamaican child with glasses
Rotary Club and SD VOSH wait for the next patient
VOSH workers wave at the camera
Four volunteers take autorefractor
Dr. P and the rest of the crew get ready for the new day
volunteer packages up patient's new glasses
Volunteer uses handheld autorefractor on Jamaican girl

However, all work and no play makes for some dull boys and girls, so we balanced the work in the clinic with some fun activities and sightseeing.  Below you can find us enjoying friends, food, and fun, while having some rest and relaxation.  As you can see, Port Antonio is full of things to do; whether its eating jerk chicken from an outdoor road-side cafe, perusing through the forest around Reach Falls, dipping your feet into the crystal clear waters at Frenchman's Cove, or snorkeling near Blue Lagoon, there's never a boring moment.

Tree Swing over the Ocean/Beach
Ocean bliss with swimmers, boats, and trampouline
friends hugging
Rocky View overlooking a waterfall
Giant Tree with bench circling it
Jamaican food
Cannon
Jamaican Jerk Chicken
Couple enjoys the waterfall
guy with cool hat waiting for food
Poolside cabana
Road to an Important Building
musicians play a melody
Jamaican girl gives American boy the bunny ears
ocean view with people playing on the beach
Jamaican Jerk Chicken
Jerk Chicken restaurant

There have been many people to contribute to this mission trip over the years including a number of doctors, opticians, and volunteers.  Below you can find some of the trip's rosters by clicking on the underlined years.

1984

1985

1986

1987

1988

1989

1990

1991

1992

1993

1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2001

2003

2005

2007

2009

2011

2013

2015

Additionally, we have begun to keep track of the total amount of men, women, and children served.  You can find this year's breakdown by clicking on the underlined year below:

1984

1985

1986

1987

1988

1989

1990

1991

1992

1993

1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2001

2003

2005

2007

2009

2011

2013

2015

2017