JIS News

Youth Month 2007 will be observed in November under the theme: ‘I am the Inspiration’, which calls on the youth to take charge of their own success.
Speaking at the launch of the month’s activities on (Oct. 23) at Jamaica House, Minister of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports, Olivia Grange, noted that the theme places the responsibility of achieving success in the hands of the Jamaican youth and is a spin-off of last year’s theme which was: ‘Aspire today.Inspire tomorrow’.
“We recognized that Jamaica’s young people are advocates for their right to be and become. ‘I am the inspiration’ calls for the youth to embrace the responsibilities that come with these rights,” she said.
Outlining the activities planned, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry, Senator Warren Newby, noted that celebrations will commence on October 31 with a National Youth Run, which will begin in Port Maria, St. Mary and pass through the parishes of St. Ann, Trelawny and St. James before ending in Hanover.
“The youth who will be participating in the National Youth Run are uniting around the common cause of promoting entrepreneurship for young people,” Senator Newby explained.
On November 3, a National Church Service will be held at the Lucea Seventh Day Adventist Church in Hanover, bringing the spiritual and emotional wellbeing of young people into focus.
In an effort to promote diversity and alternative methods of engaging young people in positive activities, a National Marching Band Competition will be held, on Saturday, November 10, at the Buckfield Playing Ground in Ocho Rios, St. Ann.
The fifth staging of the National Youth Parliament will be held at Gordon House on November 12 and will include young persons from a wide cross section of society. The event encourages advocacy among young people and facilitates divergent views on critical issues relating to youth.
International Students Day will be observed on November 16 at the College of Agriculture, Science and Education in Portland. This will be followed by the National Youth Organisation Sports Day on November 24 at the G.C Foster College in St. Catherine.
According to Senator Newby, this is the largest Youth Month event in terms of participation, and is aimed at promoting wellness and healthy lifestyle behaviour among youth.
The highlight of the month’s activities is the Prime Minister’s National Youth Awards for Excellence, which is scheduled for Sunday, December 2. At the awards ceremony, special recognition will be given to young people, who have contributed significantly to nation building through community service, sport, agriculture, culture, academia and entrepreneurship, among other areas.
For International Volunteers’ Day, which will be celebrated on December 5, the St. Catherine Parish Youth Council along with other youth leaders in the parish will be assisting the Brown’s Hall Youth Club to plant cassava as an income generating project.
In her remarks, President of the National Secondary Schools Students’ Council, Kemesha Kelly, noted that Youth Month is important as it provides an opportunity for young people in Jamaica to be recognized and celebrated as a significant part of the society.
“It is not just something where we recognize academics or the arts, but we recognize all the youth of Jamaica and as such, it is imperative that all young people feel grateful for this opportunity for them to be recognized and to be lauded as important citizens of Jamaica,” she said.
Youth Month is an annual observance of the National Centre for Youth Development and provides an opportunity for focus to be placed on young people, and the issues that affect them.

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