Basseterre, St. Kitts (May 03, 2007):
The Department of Youth is preparing to introduce a new programme that will expand the knowledge base of young people and help to prepare them to develop into well rounded citizens.
During an interview with SKNIS, Director of Youth Geoffrey Hanley explained that a diverse and high quality “After School Training Programme” which targets children between the age of 13 to 16 years will be introduced for the September school semester.
“It is designed to embrace vital cultural, social, educational and recreational elements,” Hanley stated. “We aim to enhance participant’s knowledge on a variety of social issues to strengthen personal development, improve problem solving techniques and foster greater appreciation for cultural heritage,” he added.
The educational initiative is intended to be an annual programme which is divided into three training modules. The first two modules will run for three months while the third will be completed in about one month.Module one features topics such as youth and violence, teenage sexuality, the art of tie-dying and striving to be the best. Module two will review first aid and emergencies, family relationships and pottery making as well as drug and alcohol abuse prevention. The final module will look at budgeting and investing, tourism, the importance of good nutrition and developing small businesses.
Professionals from the related fields will be recruited to instruct participants. Successful participants will be presented with certificates.
Director Hanley explained that his office will be working closely with teachers and guidance counselors to select appropriate students. He noted that the programme is goal oriented and as such it was important to find persons who are genuinely interested in taking part in this fun-filled interactive activity.
The programme will be piloted with a group of 40 persons from various high schools. As the programme enjoys success, it will expand into each high school.
“We cannot allow our youths to go further astray,” the director of youth stressed, citing an increase in antisocial behaviour. “We will continue to meet our responsibilities as a department to offer positive influences and empower residents.”
Private sector agencies or individuals wishing to assist in this endeavor are asked to contact the Department of Youth on Church Street.