Career & Education

PM launches youth summer employment programme

Sunday, August 13, 2017

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Some 2,300 youngsters have been employed over a four-week period as part of National Youth Summer Employment Programme.

The young people, from across the island, will be engaged in the auditing of street lights and identifying vulnerable individuals within communities who may require assistance during periods of natural disasters and other forms of emergency.

The exercise is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development and will run from August 14 to September 8. Each participant will be paid $8,000 weekly.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness, in his remarks at the launch held at the Jamaica College campus on Thursday, said the work to be carried out by the young people will provide critical information that will better enable the Government to serve the country.

He noted that the Government pays “a significant amount of money” for street lighting each year “and we have to know which street lights are working”.

As it relates to the gathering of information about the vulnerable, he said: “For us to provide even better service, we want to know about the shut-ins, because a part of the remit of local government is to deal with some of the welfare issues in communities. (There) are thousands of Jamaicans poor and indigent… and a part of your job will be to go out and identify them and help us to create a database so that we can properly bring service to them.”

He encouraged those youngsters who will not be in school or working when the programme ends to join the National Service Corps, under which young people will benefit from military, vocational, and life skills training over a one-year period.

Meanwhile, Minister of Local Government and Community Development Desmond McKenzie informed that the teams will also be required to identify streets for which name signs are missing. He said that funds have been set aside for “a comprehensive drive across the country in putting up street signs”.

The youth employment programme is being implemented through the municipal corporations. and the initiative falls under the Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment (HOPE) programme, which provides educational and job opportunities for young people aged 18 to 24 who are not employed or enrolled in a school or programme of training.

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