KINGSTON — Nominations for the Prime Minister's Youth Awards for Excellence have been extended to Friday, November 4.
The presentation ceremony is scheduled to take place on January 29, 2012, as part of Jamaica 50 celebrations. It is being organised by the National Centre for Youth Development (NCYD), an agency of the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture.
"We are encouraging as many young people as possible who are interested to send in their applications, if they know that they have excelled over the past years,” Youth Information Specialist, NCYD, Rochelle Brooks, told JIS News during an interview.
She said that young people are the country’s critical resource and the event presents an opportunity to highlight their achievements in a meaningful way.
"We want to reward them; we want them to know that we feel that they are doing well by working in their communities, working assiduously in their studies, whatever their area is. We are trying to ensure that they are encouraged to continue to do well,” she added.
Last year 32 young people were given awards. An organisation Service Award was also given to one entity which had outstandingly served the needs of young people.
Since the event was launched 11 years ago, at least 120 persons have been awarded in various categories, the Youth Information Specialist said.
"We want it to be bigger and better this year, especially since it’s a part of our Jamaica 50 celebrations," she emphasised.
Miss Brooks said that interested persons can download application forms from the NCYD's Facebook pages, ncydjamaica or the Natl Centre for Youth Development and email to the NCYD at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, applicants can drop off their applications at the NCYD's head office, 16A Half-Way-Tree Road, Kingston 10; National Youth Service Office, 6 Collins Green Avenue; Social Development Commission (SDC) offices islandwide and the NCYD Youth Information Centres in St. Ann, St. Mary, St. James, Portmore, Kingston and Portland.
The award is the highest honour given to young Jamaicans between the ages of 15 and 24, who have achieved national and international distinction in the areas of: academics, agriculture, arts and culture, entrepreneurship, international achievement, leadership, journalism, sports, and youth who serve their communities.
The award aims to motivate each individual recipient through positive re-enforcement and recognition and gives all recipients an opportunity to optimise their growth and development.
By E. Hartman Reckord