NYS – Successfully Helping Jamaica’s Youths


A recent trace study conducted by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has revealed that approximately 60 per cent of youth who participate in the programmes that the National Youth Service (NYS) operates, either go on to being employed on a full-time basis or pursue higher learning in tertiary institutions.
Executive Director of NYS, Reverend Adinhair Jones said, ” the national figure for those who transit to tertiary studies now stands at 17 per cent.” He noted that many of the young persons who were affiliated with NYS exceeded the national average of youth enrollment in tertiary colleges and universities.
The National Youth Service is a youth development agency that was founded in 1973 by the government of Jamaica and functions primarily as a means of providing career opportunities for youth between the ages of 17 and 24.The specific youth group being targeted by the NYS is comprised of those who have completed high school but wish to access invaluable training or work experience or those who simply want to further their studies.
Reverend Jones informed that the NYS would soon adopt a four-pronged approach that would seek to make the agency more efficient.
The first of the four perspectives was putting “emphasis on a value-based management organization.” Explaining, Reverend Jones said performance scorecards for each staff member of the NYS would be implemented.
The second perspective involves people where the NYS will be seen in every household in Jamaica as a reputable organization not just catering to the bottom of society.
The third element seeks to make the agency become a self-sustaining one. Reverend Jones pointed out that while the agency gets help from the government, they would emphasize the fact that they provide a service that will be marketable and so garner support from the private sector and wider corporate Jamaica. The NYS was looking towards mergers with companies so that the number of young people who were able to find jobs with private sector companies will be increased.
The fourth element entails making the NYS marketable, not just to participants, but any agency that will want to engage behaviour modification programmes that NYS operates, whether in the work force or by adopting a community or a school.
The NYS can be said to be doing well, successfully placing 1400 young adults in various career fields each year, including teacher’s aides in basic, primary and all age schools, jobs in the Jamaica Constabulary Force, Jamaica Fire Brigade, Jamaica Defence Force and Correctional Services; and in the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) and the Forestry Department. By achieving this annually the NYS is indeed meeting a need, addressing the unemployment problem in Jamaica.

JIS Social