Meet Antonio McKoy, Founder and President of Le Antonio’s Foundation
“What inspired Mr. McKoy to begin operation of Le Antonio’s Foundation.”
Businessman, Antonio McKoy “Paying it Forward” to the Youths and Families of MoBay’s Inner-City. Since He Founded Le Antonio’s Foundation He Has Dedicated His Time Away From His Business-Le Antonio’s Roofing and Construction, Ltd to Serve the Communities He Works In. He is Powered By Volunteers, Partners And Supporters.
In 2013 Le Antonio’s Foundation was established as a non-profit organization in Jamaica by business man Antonio McKoy who recognized the need for after-school mentoring and job training of Montego Bay’s (MoBay) inner-city at-risk youths; and also diabetes (a disease that he battled as a child) management in children and adolescents within these inner-city communities of Montego Bay. Antonio is the Chief Executive Officer and President of Le Antonio’s Roofing and Construction, Ltd located at 1 Barnett Lane, Montego Bay. Mr. McKoy readily affirms that he believes in paying it forward to the next generation. He continues to do exactly that with the service provided to the less fortunate youths and residents of the inner cities in Mobay, through the operation Le Antonio’s Foundation — a community outreach, which he founded, established and began operating with funds primarily from his roofing and construction company.
THE REAL STORY
“I am often asked, what inspired me to form Le Antonio’s Foundation and its Homework and Development Center — Here is the real story behind my passion.”
I witnessed the daily poverty of the youths and families that live in the inner-city (aka “ghetto”) areas of Montego Bay, Jamaica –where my office is located– and decided that charity must begin at “home” for me, as I felt their pain. I could not escape glaring into the souls of desperate parents and relatives who frequently stopped by my business to ask for money or work in efforts to help their children. After seeing some of these same children loitering the streets following their school’s evening dismissal — while their parents hustled for money to make ends meet; I decided to do the little I could, by registering a non-profit organization which allows me to legally seek help for these families, and open a Homework and Development Center which also serves as a Training Center for displaced youths that are out of school.
Many people though I was crazy to take on the huge responsibility of giving back to these kids in the ghetto, but I know first hand what it feels like as a child to be living in an impoverished situation. With love for the suffering, it was easy for me to use business funds from my construction company — Le Antonio’s Roofing and Construction, Ltd. — to register and begin operating Le Antonio’s Foundation as a charitable organization in Jamaica: Registration Number: CA100-258C. With my personal funds and sponsorship from a few faithful business acquaintance and friends, the doors of the Le Antonio’s Homework and Development Center opened on March 31, 2014 at 1 Barnett Lane, Montego Bay, St. James, Jamaica, with operation under four (4) flagship arms:
1. The Homework Center- Free After-school Program For the Youths
2. The Development Center- Free Career Development for the youths out of school
3. A Reason to Smile- Making wishes come through for ill kids
4. Diabetic Children Outreach- Helping kids get medicine and healthcare
We have since began operation of Le Antonio’s Foundation Youth Conference, which will host an annual event where youths in high school through college and trade school will gather for a day of mentorship and resources to impact and steer them into productive theriatry environments; be it college, trade school, or entrepreneurship; the Le Antonio’s Foundation will help prepare and guide them through the the process of transitioning into adulthood. Our Inaugural Youth Conference Event will be held on November 5. 2015 at the Wexford Hotel, here in Montego Bay.
So Who Is Antonio McKoy?
I am a country boy from a broken home in rural Jamaica; growing up I had many needs similar to what the children and families [that Le Antonio’s Foundation serve] face on a daily basis. My adult years have been kind me – but mainly because of the mentors and adults that entered my teenage life and demonstrated that there was a larger world outside my small community which offered little resources for the future generation. I know first hand the impact that demonstration of a brighter future through mentorship and education will have on an at-risk youth who is currently seeing the world boxed up in an impoverished community which appears hopeless to him/her.
I love children and youths — their passion is my passion.
I am asked a lot why do I care so much, why am I using my money to care for other people’s children and families. My answer is easy: I believe that we all have a purpose in this lifetime that we must fulfill. This is my purpose. I am at my best when I can help someone, I was born to serve humanity- especially children, the poor, the elderly and the disadvantage. When my actions can place a smile on their faces or make their lives better-I am happiest, I am fulfilled. This drives my passion.
The Homework Center of Le Antonio’s Foundation is located at 1 Barnett Lane, Montego Bay, St James, Jamaica. We operate this classroom setting out of a small rental space. It is a free resource where at least 50 disadvantaged children from the poverty stricken inner-cities of Montego Bay, such as: Barnett Lane, Railway Lane, its environs, and even students from as far as Hanover come to receive additional assistance with their homework, do research, learn Spanish or French, and express their creative artsy abilities in the Art Club. We would like to accommodate more students but we do not have the space or adequate amount of volunteer teachers and finances to do so. We current have a waiting list of students.
The Homework and Development Center is served by volunteer teachers – English teacher, Math teacher, Spanish teacher, French teacher, Art teacher. We are seeking additional volunteer teachers of all specialty.
The Homework Center has become an oasis for the students who need encouragement and additional help with their homework or research papers. We are able to give the students closer attention because we divide them into small groups. Many students do not have access to the internet or have computers at home, and although we do not have many computers-they are welcome to use the computer and internet for their research. We have a library in the Homework Center; where students are encouraged to read — we are excited that many of the children look forward to taking advantage of the library of books.
We have gotten feedback from parents who tell us how much better their children are doing in school since they have been coming to the Homework Center, and how blessed they were that their kids have a place to stay after-school until they (parent(s) get home.
Thanks you for taking the time to read, I hope that I have given you adequate information to share the passion of Le Antonio’s Foundation!
Antonio McKoy, Founder and President-Le Antonio’s Foundation