Minister for Youth, Sports and Culture, Justina Charles, has stated that the Skills Training Program (STP) under the Youth Development Division remains a “major pillar” in the government’s thrust to eradicating youth unemployment.
Charles was speaking at the STP’s 44th graduation ceremony on Wednesday May 24th 2017 at the Arawak House of Culture, where 240 graduates were awarded certificates of completion.
According to her, the ability of the STP to have recorded a success rate of 58% employment in just one month is commendable.
“In this regard, we will all agree that during these challenging times, for a single program to achieve a success of fifty-eight percent employment within one month of training is commendable,” she stated.
Charles added that in taking into consideration the constraints of lack of skills in labor markets, the government is continuing efforts of investment into labor market program to assist these persons in becoming employed.
“The mismatch between the opportunities available in the labor market and the skills possessed by graduates can contribute significantly to the high rates of youth unemployment. Being cognizant of these characters, this government has not turned a blind eye to youth unemployment. Instead, government continues to make significant investments in a number of labor market programs which prepare youth for either wage or self employment,” she said.
She said that in establishing programs that ease the burden of the labor markets, proper research must be done.
“We must identify where the need is so that we can do programs that will address those need in the labor markets,” she stated.
Charles encouraged the graduates to testify of their accomplishments under the training programs to their friends so as to stir up motivation within them to participate and get trained as well. This in itself will keep a constant flow of persons participating in the various labor market programs, she noted.
“That is how you can help your friends and your colleagues. Tell them about it, so at least that can stir up the interest and motivate them to want to come and participate in those programs. Testify of the benefits,” she remarked.
The Skills Training Program has been in existence for 35 years.