Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 27, 2020 (SKNIS): Director of Youth Empowerment in St. Kitts, Pierre Liburd, was inspired by the stories of the 25 Most Remarkable Teens summing them up as impressive and heart-warming.
“These young people are remarkable. They are strong, intelligent, creative, and innovative, they are resilient. I want to commend them for their resilience and all the other qualities that we recognize this evening,” said Mr. Liburd, while delivering remarks at the 25 Most Remarkable Teens Ceremony held at the Rivers of Living Water Christian Centre at Lime Kiln, Basseterre on Thursday, November 26.
Such was the case with Khaela Hanley who received the award for courage to overcome. She was bullied in school which made her feel that she was ‘ugly’, ‘dunce’ and ‘fat.’ Her challenges grew even more intense after her mother passed away. Khaela resorted to self-mutilation as a way of escaping the emotional scars. However, guidance counsellors at her school intervened and the 16-year-old is using music, dancing and singing to overcome the grief and pursue her dreams.
Eighteen-year-old Gregory McGrath also has a touching story. Awarded in the category of coping with challenges, Gregory is brave and resilient and stands up for what is right. It is a remarkable achievement for a young man with autism. Gregory is an accomplished archer, an avid basketball player, skilled musician and a budding artist. Gregory is working to study art and music after graduating.
At 17 years old, Karyl Woods has published books and other literary works on Wattpad and Episode, which is a story-telling network. One of her submissions on Wattpad is ranked 96 out of 139, 000 books published in the Literature category. Also, her first book on Episode, ‘River of Tears,’ is in the top 1000 books out of 100, 000 books under the Romance category.
Mr. Liburd recognized persons who would have helped them along the way and encouraged them to continue working closely with young people.
“Thanks to each and everybody that would have been a part of their lives and continue to mould not just them but their peers and every young person that you encounter,” said the director. “I just want to encourage us to continue to be the pillars of strength, support and guidance that have been successful in bringing these young persons to the positive role models and the positive citizens that they all are and that we all recognize this evening.”
Mr. Liburd said, “…It is for us to train them to lead us as we would expect to be led and to take this country forward and for it to be productive, prosperous, and peaceful and all the other great things that we anticipate and hope for it to be. It is in our hands to continue to shape them to take the reins of leadership.”
The director thanked the many partners who played an integral role in ensuring that the 25 Most Remarkable Teens event for 2020, was successful, and for supporting and empowering the youth population.