The creative economy is the saviour of Barbados’ failing economy.
The comment was made by Minister of Youth and Community Empowerment Adrian Medic Forde as he responded to questions from the media prior to National Youth Week scheduled to begin September 23.
Forde said that since Barbados has no natural resources, its investment is in its people who must in turn bring the needed financial rewards to the island.
“The creative economy is the economy that takes Barbados into the next millennium. There is no better creative mind than that of the young people of this country. We have to cut into the untamed and uncut potential so it can catapult Barbados across the world. That is what we are going to do,” he said, adding that the Government is investing in young creative minds in order for them to put Barbados on the world map.
“The creative economy must be the economy to save our country. We don’t have bauxite, we don’t have gold like other countries; what we have is… the young people, and that is what we are investing in to ensure their creative talents [are] exposed to the rest of the world and that Barbados can benefit,” Forde said.
Turning his attention to National Youth Week, he said it aims to build awareness of issues confronting young people and develop policies that will fill the void. The theme for National Youth Week 2018 is Safe Spaces For Youth.
“National Youth Week was introduced by the Division of Youth Affairs to celebrate youth achievement and engage youth participation in policy and programme development. The week also highlights the work of the staff in the Division of Youth Affairs and other stakeholders in furthering the youth development agenda,” he said, adding that safe spaces are critical to positive youth development.
“I assure you that my Ministry is committed to creating and facilitating opportunities and initiating policies to provide these needed spaces for the nation’s youth. We must recognize that safe spaces go beyond physical locations but also speak to virtual and simple conducive environments where our youth are invited and welcome to make contributions to policy and decision making without fear,” Forde added.
National Youth Week begins on September 23 with a Youth Parade and Church Service at Bank Hall Nazarene Church, St Michael at 10 a.m. (LG)