Two new youth programmes are on the radar for Port Mourant, Region Six. This is according to Minister of Social Cohesion, Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. George Norton.
A decision to move forward with these programmes stemmed from a February 4, 2019 meeting the Minister had with members of an overseas-based Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) called Humanitarian Mission Guyana Incorporated.
The group, comprising overseas-based Guyanese, Mr. Suresh Sugrim; teacher of the Port Mourant Secondary School, Ms. Shafeeza Nandlall and resident, Ms. Trudy Sinclair, met with Minister Norton who was accompanied by the Assistant Director of Youth, Ms. Leslyn Boyce, and Technical Officer of the Department of Social Cohesion, Ms. Pamela Nauth.
During the engagement at Minister Norton’s Main Street office, the NGO members highlighted a number of social ills affecting the community of Port Mourant; these include unemployment, caused by the level of school dropout and child labour in the area.
“It is a very depressed community,” Sugrim said. He explained to Minister Norton that the NGO owns a building in the community that can be utilized for the hosting of activities and programmes that can have a positive impact in the development of the community.
The Assistant Director of Youth, Ms. Boyce informed the meeting that while the Department does not have the budget to immediately clone all the programmes at the Vryman’s Erven Training Centre in New Amsterdam, every effort will be made to implement at least two new programmes at the NGO facility in Port Mourant.
With the organization already finding a suitable instructor who also resides in the community, the Department of Youth has agreed to fund programmes in the area of welding and plumbing.
Minister Norton noted that “While the Ministry has the Vryman Erving’s Training Centre doing amazing work in Region Six, I am very glad that we have now secured this space to go directly into a community that needs our help.”
He commended the group for its good work and for understanding that Guyana’s development is a multi-stakeholder effort.
“No government will ever be able to do it alone. The people must be involved. Organizations such as yours must play their role. The problems facing any country require a united approach, and I am most happy that we have been able to so instantaneously form this bond to help the people of Port Mourant,” Minister Norton said.
Dr. Norton will soon be visiting Port Mourant as part of his community outreach for the month of February.