- Five participants in the CSJP have been awarded a six-month internship to work on an international construction project.
- The five young men will be attached to Prime Developments Limited, the construction company awarded the contract to build a 130-room business hotel.
- All the men graduated from another internship programme at the Jamaica Defence Force, Up Park Camp.
Five participants in the Citizen Security and Justice Programme (CSJP), have been awarded a six-month internship to work on an international construction project, based in New Kingston.
The five young men will be attached to Prime Developments Limited, the construction company awarded the contract to build a 130-room business hotel, which will be operated by the Marriot Group of Companies.
“The key partners in the development of the hotel, Caribe Hospitality and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), are always interested in improving the capacity of the nationals of the countries where they have projects. The partners encouraged us to facilitate five interns, which we are happy to do, and we will offer them as much training as we can,” Project Manager of Prime Developments Limited, Andrew Hill, tells JIS News.
Mr. Hill points out that the CSJP participants will be exposed to steel work and the core activities associated with building the foundation on the site. “We look forward to encouraging them. If they do well, they would have impressed a contractor who is always looking for good workers,” he says.
All the men graduated from another internship programme at the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), Up Park Camp, which lasted for two years. During that time they were heavily involved in general construction projects.
“I am certain that the discipline they garnered at the JDF regarding punctuality and team work, they will definitely take here. We expect them to excel and do better than they did at the JDF. Ultimately it is about employment opportunities, so we hope that at the end of this internship period, they will gain employment with the company, based on their work attitude and skill-sets,” Senior Community Action Officer at the CSJP, Denise Adams, tells JIS News.
“I am always excited for these opportunities as they demonstrate that possibilities exist for young people to be engaged in meaningful activities and not anti-social behaviour,” she adds.
A former CSJP participant, Clarence Benjamin, was recently hired by Prime Developments Limited as a Supervisor, and has been assigned to manage the new interns.
Mr. Benjamin says “it is a wonderful feeling to know that I am coming from the programme and now I am responsible for men who are where I once was. This will help me to better interact with them.”
He emphasises that more young people need to become involved and to look at the bigger picture in life. “It is not always about money, but the invaluable experience that is imparted throughout the process,” he says.
“I am a grown man with children and responsibilities, a situation that differs from most youngsters. I got involved in the CSJP programme and I was receiving a stipend which had to take care of my needs and responsibilities. I’ve learned that sometimes you have to grow from a little in order for you to achieve or accomplish a lot,” Mr. Benjamin tells JIS News.
One of the interns, Jevaune Kelly, says he is delighted to learn a new skill in formwork. “It is the modern type of formwork with the use of aluminium, no more ply and block work. This technique makes a building stronger. We will also be doing steel fixing. I feel important knowing that I am involved in such a critical area of this project,” he says.
The CSJP is a social intervention programme of the Ministry of National Security that is active in 50 communities across eight parishes. It continues to create employment opportunities for at-risk youth from inner-city communities.