GoM Reboots Youth Apprenticeship Scheme

Changes are being made to the youth scheme which was launched in 2017 to help young people find employment, to bring it in line with regional and international standards. The Ministry of Education, Youth Affairs, and Sports announced late Friday, the reopening of the Youth and Sports Development Programme.
According to a release from the ministry, “the programme, in Phase II will seek to support the youth of Montserrat through apprenticeship placement, entrepreneurship development and capacity/skills development.”
Phase 1, which was launched in January 2017, focus had been on the apprenticeship scheme which saw participants receiving a monthly stipend of up to $1000 and the businesses $500 for training support. The Department for International Affairs (DFID) had allocated EC$ 750,000 for the 18-month project.
The programme was temporarily halted at the start of the current financial year for evaluation. With the reboot, the ministry said the Youth and Sports Development Project will run for 24-months and will be focused on capacity building, young athletes, para-professionals and entrepreneurs. “The objective is to build capacity towards financial independence. The programme will re-align its operations in accordance with the Commonwealth Youth Mandate and the OECS Youth Objectives,” the release stated.
In this phase, “the programme will continue to aid in establishing the policy framework for youth and sports development in Montserrat. This includes the completion of the youth policy and a youth bill. The menu of programmes for youth will be upgraded to include Internship for students enrolled at the Montserrat Community College and the streamlining of the Community Partnership Programme.
“The continuation of Entrepreneurial Development will be founded on establishing independent youth lead businesses. Programmes will include the development of key skills in: bookkeeping, taxation, profit and loss statements, effective business plans and resource acquisition.”
Lyston Skerritt will lead the programme and has also been tasked to assist in the development of a Sports Bill in collaboration with the Sports Division and Sports Associations of Montserrat. He will also develop a plan for the integration of the Youth and Sports Development Programme into the Department of Youth and Sports to ensure an efficient and effective delivery of services for the island’s youth. Skerritt previously worked as Guidance Counselor for the Montserrat Secondary School and holds a Masters in Education in College Student Counseling and Personnel Services.
Interested youth are invited to visit the office downstairs the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports in Brades to submit applications from Monday 16th July at 8 AM.
“Candidates will have to be registered and assessed by the Task Force prior to placement in areas of interest or demand. The project seeks to cover 30 apprentices at any time,” Permanent Secretary Colin Fergus told Discover Montserrat.