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Gov’t gave out $26.9B in cash grants for school children from 2021 to 2024- Finance Minister

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Dr. Ashni Singh, Senior Minister in the Office of the President with Responsibility for Finance and the Public Service

To support the education sector and ease the financial burden on families, the Government of Guyana has invested $26.9 billion in cash grants for school children over the past four years.

This revelation was made by Dr. Ashni Singh, Senior Minister in the Office of the President with Responsibility for Finance and the Public Service, during the launch of the 2024 ‘Because We Care’ Cash Grant initiative at Queen’s College this morning.

Dr. Singh emphasized that the restoration and substantial increase of the cash grant for school children is a fulfillment of a key promise made by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) in its 2020 manifesto. The initiative, which had seen a temporary halt, was reinstated in 2021 with an initial grant of $15,000 per child. By 2024, the grant has been significantly increased to $40,000, complemented by a $5,000 uniform allowance, making the total grant per child $45,000 for the year.

“This year’s allocation of $9.2 billion towards the cash grants underscores the government’s commitment to ensuring that every child has access to quality education and the necessary resources to succeed,” Dr. Singh stated. He highlighted that between 2021 and 2024, the government has disbursed a total of $26.9 billion under the ‘Because We Care’ initiative.

The minister stressed the importance of investing in the younger generation, noting that the education sector has consistently received the largest share of the national budget. The sector’s budget has surged from $52.8 billion in 2019 to an impressive $135.2 billion this year, reflecting the government’s vision of delivering world-class education in Guyana.

“Ensuring that our children realize their full potential is a priority for our government,” Dr. Singh remarked. “By providing substantial financial support through these cash grants, we are not only easing the burden on families but also investing in the future of our nation.”

The ‘Because We Care’ cash grant is available to all children enrolled in nursery, primary, and secondary schools across Guyana, including those attending private institutions. This broad inclusivity ensures that every child, regardless of their school’s status, benefits from the government’s initiative.

During his address, Dr. Singh underscored that this is a pivotal and promising time for the youth of Guyana. “In today’s Guyana, where the economy is growing at an unprecedented rate, young people have unparalleled opportunities across all sectors,” he said, highlighting the various training and job-creation programs launched by the government.

He pointed to the recent graduation ceremony of the Guyana Online Academy of Learning (GOAL), where over 1,700 young individuals completed their studies. Additionally, more than 7,700 scholarships have been awarded for various fields, demonstrating the government’s dedication to equipping the youth with the skills needed for the future.

The ‘Because We Care’ initiative is part of a broader agenda to uplift the education sector and, by extension, the entire society. By investing in education and providing substantial financial support to families, Dr. Singh said the government is laying the foundation for a brighter and more prosperous future for all Guyanese.

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