Jamaica News: More than 3,500 youth from all parishes will participate in the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development’s Youth Summer Employment Programme (YSEP).
The programme, which starts officially on Monday, August 13, will now last for six weeks, having been extended for an additional two weeks over last year.
Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, provided details of the project at Northern Caribbean University (NCU), in Mandeville, on August 9.
“Not only have we increased the number of youth, but this year we will add some unique features to the programme. As Jamaica prepares to host the global conference on Disaster Risks in 2020, this year we have included disaster risk management as a core function of the YSEP,” he said.
Mr. McKenzie noted that this year, they will retain the best 150 young persons until the end of the calendar year to collect data on disaster risks across the country.
“To input the data that will be collected, we will be identifying another 50 of you who are computer savvy within the Municipal Corporations, making it 200 of the finest and brightest young people who will be retained until the end of the calendar year,” the Minister said.
The audit done by the young people last year revealed that some 35 per cent of street lights were not working, but the Government was paying for them.
This year, property tax has been included as a critical area of employment, so the young workers will assist in various areas to serve notices on delinquent persons.
For his part, Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, encouraged the YSEP participants to embrace the opportunity to be employed and to gain much-needed experience.
“Young people just need an opportunity and if they get it, they will rise and they will shine and they will make us all proud. One of the things we have recognised as a barrier to employment of young people is the often elusive concept of work experience. The reality is that even when you go to school and do well, when you send out your résumé, employers are looking for work experience first,” he said.
“We issued the challenge to the Ministries to ramp up their work experience programme, and in my Ministry, through the National Youth Service (NYS), over 16,000 youth will get work experience this year. The Ministry of Tourism will add another 1,000 and with the more than 3,500 from Local Government, this year more than 20,000 will get work experience, so they can have that essential component on their résumés,” Mr. Green added.
Source: JIS News