Unemployment, decision making and lack of inclusion in political spaces are some of the issues facing Barbadian youth.
General Manager of Barbados Workers’ Union Cooperative Credit Union Limited, Clyde Sobers, who delivered the feature address at the Barbados Youth Development Council Awards Ceremony on Sunday, said that the United Nations and the BYDC identified those issues as challenges facing the young people and reaffirmed the commitment of the credit union to identify and assist young persons in Barbados who would become the future leaders of tomorrow.
Addressing the audience attending the event held at the Mount Restaurant at the University of the West Indies, he said the mission of the credit union was to become an efficient provider of credit union products and services which developed and sustained the socio-economic standards of all its members.
The General Manager also stated that the world had changed and had become a place which would foster entrepreneurs as people would have difficulty finding jobs in this economic climate. He advised all in attendance to become volunteers as some employers viewed this as a plus when looking at applications.
He told the youth in the audience that the Credit Union offered many scholarships from primary to university level and noted that they also identified children who might be less fortunate and in need of assistance. On August 8, at the Sir Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre Kebebe Cumberbatch became the first ambassador for the Credit Union.
The theme of the Awards Ceremony was Building a Better World, Partnering with the Youth.
On the same night awards were presented to Jason Carmichael, Nichole Murray, Damien Mascoll, Regina Selman Moore, Christa Soleyn and Rodney Garnes for their contribution to the BYDC. The Volunteer of the Year award went to Melissa Goring.
Lack of sponsorship
In the opening remarks, President of the BYDC, Jason Francis, explained that due to lack of sponsorship the Youth Fest was not held this year. He stated there was still much work that needed to be done within the organistation and noted that a meeting was held to evaluate the organisation by someone from South Africa who gave them good feedback. Thirty students from Wesley College came to Barbados and worked with the Pinelands Creative Wirkshop and Children Homes within Barbados earlier this year.
Caricom Youth Ambasssador Christa Soleyn presented a slide show about Violence Against Women. She stated that the results of a survey that was done in nine countries, showed that 48 per cent of sexual initiation were forced. She encouraged victims to report their abusers, informed adults to alert the authorities when a child says he/she was abused and to speak to children about what is a good touch and a bad touch.
The Unite Campaign would like persons to wear Orange on the 25 of each month to stand on ending violence against women and girls.
Entertainment was provided by Donnya Piggot who performed Spoken Word and Neon Dance Group. In attendance was MP Mr. Hamilton Lashley, Asha Jones from the Caribbean Youth Environment Network, Carla Alleyne representing the Duke of Edinburgh awards and Steffan Burgess from the United Youth Leaders of Barbados. (TH)