New Youth and Sports Development Project Coordinator Lyston Skerritt is sharing some of the revamped programme’s early successes.
In a statement released on Thursday, Skerritt said over the past two weeks “the programme has registered 30 apprentices, 23 collaborating public/private sector work sites and five companies under the Private Sector Enhancement Pathway. We have recorded information for 327, approximately 30% of youth between the ages of 18-35 on island.”
The coordinator added that in the coming month, special focus will be placed on school leavers from both the Montserrat Community College and the secondary school. The aim is “to understand students’ intentions for either continued education or engaging in new workplace experiences. The programme is planning for an estimated 80 school leavers this year. We are seeking to assist in the seamless transition after the completion of the School Leavers programme, announcement of exam results and end of a variety of short personal travel activities.”
The release also revealed that the coordinator is “advancing collaborations and plans in order for the finalization of the 2018 New Business Pitch Competition and the development of the Young Entrepreneur Business Incubator.”
The planned incubator will potentially provide a physical space to support business development, facilitate training and mentorship for business owners. Special attention will be given to update young entrepreneurs on the nuances of the new Companies Act and the latest in business operations efficiency.
“One of the most notable upgrades to the programme includes the development of an academic assessment and assistance programme” with the hope of raising the minimum education of participants to achieve “hireable” standards. Evaluation will also now include learning outcomes in alignment with Government of Montserrat’s competency framework and the Commonwealth Youth Worker Standards.
The Youth and Sports Development Programme is a 24-month Programme focused on capacity building young athletes, paraprofessionals 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 Youth and Sports Development Programme operates under the auspices of the Ministry Education, Youth Affairs and Sports.