JIS News

Information, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister, Olivia Grange, has called on the society to join in the effort to ensure that the county’s youth, especially those at-risk, are provided with the necessary opportunities to become productive and responsible citizens.
“If we agree that the future of our nation rest with our young people, then it must mean all of our young people. As a nation, we have not paid enough attention to particular groups of young people, more so those in circumstances of need,” Miss Grange said as she delivered the main address last night (Dec. 12) at the Possibility Programme’s Christmas dinner and graduation exercise at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel.
The Minister noted further that the nation has to stop ignoring the plight of disadvantaged groups of young people. “Too often, we have allowed ourselves to be blinded to the plight of many of our young people below Cross Roads as we carry on the business of uptown. Overtime, we have seen the destructive effects flowing from this neglect of disadvantaged groups of our young people,” she stated.
“I know that many young people, who find themselves on the streets, who find themselves wiping windscreen, who find themselves doing things that they know they should not be doing, are young people, who circumstances and this society, has created in them, anti-social and desperate behaviour,” she said.
Miss Grange commended the stakeholders of the Possibility Programme for providing at risk youth with the skills and training that they need to become productive citizens.
The Possibility Programme, which was established in 2002, is aimed at getting children and young people off the streets and providing them with a programme of rehabilitation and skills training.
The programme involves collaboration among government ministries and agencies, the non-government community, the police, church groups and private persons, to meet the social/emotional needs of these at-risk youth and to address their skills and employment needs as well. There are three components to the programme: a care centre, a behaviour modification/re-socialization centre, and a skills/employment centre.