Gov’t Empowering Disabled Persons Through Skills Training

Photo: Rudranath Fraser Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Zavia Mayne (standing, centre), looks on while past student of the Abilities Foundation, Aziza Anderson (seated right), gets her nails manicured by cosmetology student at the Foundation, Abigail Rose (seated, left). Also observing are cosmetology instructor, Caroline Patterson (left); and Managing Director at the Abilities Foundation, Susan Hamilton. Occasion was an Abilities Day event held at the Foundation on Constant Spring Road, St. Andrew, on May 31.

Story Highlights

  • Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Zavia Mayne, says the Ministry is committed to empowering persons with disabilities through skills training so that they can make a decent living.
  • He informed that discussions have been initiated with the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts towards the implementation of training courses “that will create inclusion for persons with disabilities.”
  • “The stage has been set for young men and women with disabilities to make their invaluable contribution to the creative arena,” Mr. Mayne said, while addressing a function at the Abilities Foundation on Constant Spring Road in St. Andrew on Thursday (May 31).

Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Zavia Mayne, says the Ministry is committed to empowering persons with disabilities through skills training so that they can make a decent living.

He said that in addition to traditional vocational training, focus is being placed on helping disabled persons to harness their creative talents for income generation.

He informed that discussions have been initiated with the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts towards the implementation of training courses “that will create inclusion for persons with disabilities.”

“The stage has been set for young men and women with disabilities to make their invaluable contribution to the creative arena,” Mr. Mayne said, while addressing a function at the Abilities Foundation on Constant Spring Road in St. Andrew on Thursday (May 31).

He said that his Ministry will continue to promote the rights and dignity of disabled persons so that they can reach their full potential, and lauded the work of the Abilities Foundation in “facilitating their social and emotional adjustment in the wider society.”

Through the entity’s Social and Economic Inclusion Project, aimed at increasing employability and skills development of poor persons with disabilities, 60 students have been placed in work solutions over a three-year period. Last year, 30 students were placed, which was the largest single placement.

A number of public and private sector institutions are supporting the work of the institution, with Digicel Foundation sponsoring a Beauty Services Unit that is providing the students with training in cosmetology, nail technology and make-up artistry.

The Abilities Foundation provides vocational education to persons with disabilities, to enable them to function as creative and productive citizens. It was established in November 1991 and is a registered voluntary organisation.

The Foundation works in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security and the HEART Trust/NTA.

JIS Social