The National Youth Service (NYS) will be implementing new strategies and programmes in the 2013/2014 financial year, to effectively meet the needs of the targeted cohort.
Speaking at the launch of the NYS Summer Programme, in Kingston, on Wednesday, April 3, Minister of Youth and Culture, Hon. Lisa Hanna, said greater emphasis will be placed on the promotion of social and cultural entrepreneurship.
“We will also be redirecting some of our young people into self employment. We are looking at areas such as agricultural entrepreneurship, more mentoring for our rural youth, craft and fashion design, and we are looking at manufacturing for some of our urban young people as well,” Ms Hanna said.
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The NYS will also be exploring areas such as music and business, and integrating them within its curriculum.
Ms Hanna said the organisation will also seek to integrate social values, cultural identity and love for country into the NYS programmes.
“Right now the economic environment and the state of the economy make it critical for us at the National Youth Service to prepare young people to earn a living and to contribute to national development,” she said.
She noted that shorter programmes with shorter curriculum will be implemented by the agency, while adding that some 11,584 young people will be targeted by the NYS for various programmes this financial year.
“We are looking at a youth apprenticeship programme, and a graduate work experience, because we recognise that we have some young people out there who graduated from university and need internship and some experience, so that their resumes can be improved. We will also be having a success camp, and financial assistance,” Miss Hanna said.
She noted that there could be an amendment to the National Youth Service Act, to allow persons below the age of 17 to participate in the summer programme.
Some 3,750 spaces are available for secondary and tertiary students between 17 and 24 years of age to participate in the NYS Summer Programme. The deadline to send in application forms is April 26, 2013.
By Latonya Linton, JIS Reporter