Haynes said that though this year’s Cohorts were successful with a graduation rate of 90 per cent, one of the key lessons learned for the organization over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic was the need to ensure competence in the online learning environment.
“A total of 334 young people from Cohorts 1 and 2, comprising 202 males and 132 females, have successfully completed the BYAC two-year development training programme, notwithstanding the challenges occasioned by the COVID 19 pandemic. This represents a completion rate of 90 per cent, this is indeed laudable given the challenges we experienced.
“One of the lessons learnt is that we must ensure that all of our trainees are exposed to online training and are equipped and competent to navigate the various online training modalities. In addition, as an institution we need to build the capacities of our staff and resource persons, to respond to the ever changing needs of our clients. We need to ensure that we have the information, communication, and technologies that are fit for purpose.”
Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment, Charles Griffith, congratulated the group of young graduates for their achievements over the course of the two years in the fields of study and training they completed, and stressed that they must continue to face future challenges with the same grit and determination they showed while under the care of the YouthADVANCE Corps.
“At the end of the day, when you move away from here, there will be Goliaths in your life and they will come sometimes every single day, but now you should feel equipped with that slingshot and several stones, that you will be able to battle the Goliaths that come your way every single day, fortressed and buttressed by the work that was done by the Barbados YouthADVANCE Corps.
“You must become beacons on this landscape, you must be able to encourage your peers at the community level to see another way, and to walk well in this country because all of us need you to walk well.” (SB)