How a canteen rescued Hydel High School's Penn Relays campaign

By Sports Desk April 29, 2022

Hydel High School has been doing well at the Penn Relays in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania but their achievements might not have been possible save for the intervention of Express Canteen, whose last-minute efforts got the team on a plane to the USA earlier this week.

Hydel High's athletes have been blazing a trail of success and their girls’ team placed second at the recently-concluded ISSA/Grace Kennedy Boys' and Girls' Athletics Championships at the National Stadium.

In a media interview after the meet, Hydel’s head coach Corey Bennett revealed challenges that the school faced in securing funding for Champs and getting to the Penn Relays, noting that due to a financial shortfall they had to cut the number of members on their team.

Express Canteen, which caters to the school as its concessionaire, answered the call as they had done before and Bennett said it is testimony to the company's commitment to the development of some of the nation's finest athletic talent.

"The fact that the Express Canteen franchise has answered the call to lend their support to the Hydel High School team travelling to the Penn Relays shows once again their commitment to invest in Jamaica’s youth and the continued nurturing of their talents," Bennett said.

"We are sincerely appreciative of Express Canteen’s financial contribution towards our team, affording them the opportunity to compete amongst some of the best teams internationally.

"We would like to publicly thank the Express Canteen’s Management for their consistent and unwavering support towards the Hydel High School track and field programme."

The largesse was not lost on Hydel’s star sprinter Briana Lyston, who expressed her gratitude.

“The support for sports, and in particular the Hydel High’s Track and Field program, is truly important to us and most appreciated by us,” she said.

“The fact that some members of the corporate world continue to understand their importance to our development in the sport is simply great!”

Two of the events in which the Hydel High girls team will be participating are the 4x100 metres and 4x400 metres relays, in which they are favoured to battle for top honours, especially in the 4x100 metres where they came face to face with arch-rivals Edwin Allen and Ryan Foster, Chairman of Express Canteen, views their contribution as an investment in the next generation of athletes.

"Express Canteen is extremely proud of the exploits of all our schools at the recent Boys' and Girls' Champs. We believe in a holistic approach to our partnerships in schools, so when we saw the need of Hydel High to attend the Penn Relays it was an easy decision to support them," said Foster, who is also he is also the General Secretary/CEO of Jamaica's apex sporting body, the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA).

"We are extremely proud of Corey and his achievements with the Hydel track programme and believe this investment is not only an investment in Hydel but also the next generation of athletes that will become our future Olympians.”

 The Hydel High School team has also secured support from Florida-based SupaJamz radio and a perennial sponsor for Jamaican high schools competing at Penns, Team Jamaica Bickle.

 

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