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The Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture will be expanding the number of Youth Information Centres and Satellite Information Centres, to ensure that there is at least one in each parish.

This was disclosed by Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry, Senator Warren Newby, as he opened the State of the Nation Debate in the Senate Friday (June 24).

He said that this will be done through assistance from the Inter American Development Bank (IDB), the Korean Agency for International Co-operation (KAIC), the United Nations Children Fund and the Universal Access Fund.

 “I wish to place on record the Ministry’s profound gratitude to these agencies,” Senator Newby said.

Operated by the National Centre for Youth Development, Youth Information Centres (YICs) are youth-friendly spaces, where young people, between the ages of 10-24 and sometimes as young as eight, can discuss and access information on issues concerning them. Concerns range from drug use, sex, AIDS, available jobs to personal advancement.

In the meantime, Senator Newby said that he expects a knitting together of youth serving organisations, based on recommendations of the Public Sector Transformation Programme.

“The initiatives are designed to enable us to reach this vulnerable, but powerful cohort, because they represent the engine for Jamaica’s growth and development,” Senator Newby said.

CONTACT: LATONYA LINTON