Boy's Harbour Exchange Programme

Jack Hayward High School students with Daphne Barr, wife of Keith Barr, enjoy the sites in New York City.

Beginning in 1992 and regrettably ending in 2005, the Student Exchange programme with Boy's Harbor began as an inter-school exchange but was narrowed down to JHHS soon after its opening. During the twelve joyous years of its existence, the Harbor exchange was one of the most looked forward to highlights of the school year and a memorable adjunct to the school curriculum. Founded and sponsored by Frances Singer-Hayward and Sir Jack Hayward in conjunction with Anthony Drexel Duke and his wife Luly, the visits were coordinated by Maquella Smith, formerly with the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture.

Maquella Smith, Frances Singer-Hayward, Boy's Harbour Founder Anthony Drexel Duke and his wife Luly Duke at a reception at the Hayward Home March, 1997.

Boy's Harbor or, as it is now known, The Harbor for Boys and Girls, is one of the oldest and most prestigious youth empowerment agencies in America. Founded over sixty-five years ago by Anthony “Tony” Drexel Duke, whose grandfather, Washington Duke, founded Duke University, "The Harbor" encompasses a school (The Harbor Academy,) a wide range of social services, a performing arts center, and a former summer camp in East Hampton, New York. The Harbor seeks to empower young people by encouraging them to achieve their full potential through education and the honing of intellectual skills and artistic achievement.

The yearly "exchange" traditionally began during the Easter Holiday, when a group of the New York students from the Harbor Academy, with a special interest in science, traveled to Grand Bahama, to be hosted by selected JHHS families with children of similar ages. During their weeklong stay in Freeport they, along with their hosts' children, were treated to a fun filled, educational, and scientific range of activities.

Jack Hayward High School students at Boy's Harbour Camp in East Hampton, Long Island New York with Sir Jack's grandson, Rupert Hayward.

The activities included work with the Dolphins, snorkeling on the reefs, studying the marine life, nature walks and visits to the caves in the Bahamas National Trust parks, studies of flowers and fauna at the Garden of the Groves, kayaking through the mangrove swamps - new and exciting experiences, even for many of the Freeport children, most of whom had never had the opportunity to partake in these activities.

Summer brought a reversal of the process when a group of JHHS students traveled to New York, accompanied by former JHHS Senior Master, Keith Barr, and his wife Daphne. The Freeport students participated in a wide variety of scientific and ecological pursuits, corresponding to the activities in Freeport, including the exploration of marine life and woodland studies of the surrounding environment. They were, in addition, required to compose a computer-based report on their experiences. The East Hampton stay, however, was hardly a case of "all work and no play!" It included all sorts of wonderful camping experiences - sports, swimming, kayaking, and general bonding - lifelong friendships forged - and MANY tears shed when it was time to say "good-bye…"

JHHS Patron Frances Singer-Hayward talks at her home during a luncheon held for the visiting students.
Words from Frances Singer-Hayward:

"One of the loveliest highlights of my year were always the visits of the New York children to Freeport and the summer visits of our JHHS students to East Hampton New York. There was always such an incredible ‘vibe’ of love that permeated each trip. The bonding was always so instantaneous between the Bahamian families and the New York students and Mr. Duke could never get over the extraordinary contribution our Freeport students made to camp life. As with so much in life, we perhaps never realized enough how incredibly fortunate we were at the time."

More Boy's Harbour Exchange Programme Links:
2001 Exchange Photo Gallery
2002 Exchange Highlights and Photos
2003 Minister Sears' Luncheon Photos

Boy's Harbour students in Freeport, Grand Bahama
Jack Hayward High School students at the Boy's Harbor Camp in
East Hampton, Long Island, New York.