JIS News

Young people, aged 18 to 35 years, have benefited from a series of islandwide ‘Entrepreneurship Interface Meetings’, aimed at encouraging them to develop entrepreneurial skills and to seek opportunities for self-employment.
The session, which started on March 22 and ended on April 5, were organized by the Jamaica Social Policy Evaluation (JASPEV) and saw participation from agencies such as the Jamaica Business Development Centre (JBDC), Scientific Research Council (SRC), Jamaica Employers Federation, Self Start Fund, Small Business Association of Jamaica, Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) and the Social Development Commission.
JASPEV’s Prototype Co-ordinator at the Cabinet Office, Stedman Noble, told JIS News that the sessions were successful, with many young persons attending the various fora.
“The agencies have come together .to look at the information given by these young people about the businesses that they wanted to do and they are following up with them to provide the critical services,” he informed.
He indicated that JASPEV would be monitoring the results of the programme to ensure that the objectives were met.
“We, at JBDC, will be meeting with the participants again on a one to one basis to see how best we can assist them,” said JBDC Business Development Officer, O’kiele Stewart, adding that agency was ready to provide the technical assistance and the training to enable the participants to start businesses.
Meanwhile, Research Director for the SDC, Juanita Reid, told JIS News that the Commission’s role in the project was to sensitize the public about the meetings and mobilize persons to participate.
She noted that many of the participants expressed the need for training, pointing out that they lacked information about product marketing and how they could work to sustain projects.
Exposing the youth to various innovative business solutions was one of the key objectives of the sessions and some of the business ideas included ornamental fishing, apiculture, domestic tree crop and the making of soft toys and banana paper.