Spice plots a bigger and better back to school charitable initiative after cops were forced to shut down her 2022 event.
The Queen of Dancehall Back-to-School initiative ended prematurely as unruly parents caused chaos, and some allegedly attacked staff working at the event who were giving out the vouchers. According to reports, the Jamaica Constabulary Force shut down the event due to the disorganization and volatile situation created by aggressive parents.
Spice started the initiative under her Grace Hamilton’s Women Empowerment Foundation started in 2019, and the event was being held for the first time in person since the Covid-19 pandemic started.
According to reports online by persons who attended the event, people in the crowd were pushing to get to the front of the line to ensure that they received a voucher, and others had fainted. One woman also apologized for hitting one of the staff.
Earlier videos showed Spice waving to her fans from a stage that separated them by a barricade. The crowd appeared to have hundreds of people who were seen pushing and scrambling to get to the front.
“Everybody calm down, everybody get back off the barriers,” someone is heard saying on a mic as they tried to control the unruly crowd.
Spice later said she was unable to give out many of the envelopes she had prepared and said that she had done everything she could to ensure that the event went smoothly, including printing armbands, getting a permit from the JCF to host the event, and trying to organize the crowd to no avail.
However, the artist said she was not angry at the crowd even though the event did not go as planned.
“I’m feeling sad and I’m still feeling a little bit down,” the artist said. “I did everything in my power to make this event a more organized and a better one… the plan was for us to give people the armbands, issue the vouchers then cut the armband as people left….It was still a task, it was a lot of chaos, there’s a lot of people that’s mad or maybe upset, but personally within myself I’m not upset, I’m more like, I understand…Mi understand because at the end of the day I know that people were pushing because obviously they wanted to get to the front, because people obviously wanted an envelope,” she said.
On her Instagram account, she left a lengthy message to fans promising to work out the details for an organized event to help people.
“I’ll never stop until this give away is 1000 percent where I want it to be. This year I thought I was more organized, I rented a bigger and better venue , I organized security barriers, printed Arm Bands , got permit that came with the Jamaica constabulary forced involvement , proper Mic and sound system so you could hear me clearly , got sponsors for refreshments and people was still pushing and causing chaos to come to the front or to get an envelope first,” she said.
View this post on Instagram
“Believe me when I say this I’m still not mad at you I completely understand that there’s truly mothers out there, that are desperate in need of assistance. Please forgive me if you didn’t get one… Next year everyone will walk away happy. I still have envelopes that I didn’t get a chance to give,” Spice added.
Spice said she received donations from a number of her fans who wanted to sponsor a child at the give-back. She shouted out many of the persons who donated and also named Jada Kingdom, who donated $100,000 to the cause. The artist said her back-to-school giveaway raised $5 million in vouchers.
She said that in 2019 she had given away 500 backpacks to children and wanted to offer more help to parents in 2022.
She added that there were enough vouchers for everyone as she shared a pile of vouchers she still has.
“The JCF advised us that we have to stop because they were pushing and there were kids there,” she said as she added that people in the audience were pushing.
In the meantime, Spice called on fans to share solutions on how the vouchers could be given out to her fans.