Government Committed To Youth Empowerment

(ZIZ News) — Throughout the month of November, the positive work of young people will be put in the spotlight as St. Kitts and Nevis observes Youth Month.

A number of activities, which include a Cook-Off Competition, a Safety and Security Conference and a Youth Parliament Sitting, have been organised for the month-long observance.

During the official address, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Youth, the Hon. Shawn Richards said the Team UNITY-led Government will continue to put the necessary policies in place to foster youth development.

“My government has committed to the necessary policy changes, intergovernmental alliances and public-private sector partnerships that engender an enabling environment in which our young people can navigate the vicissitudes of life with realised reduction in detriment,” he said.

The Youth Minister also pledged his government’s commitment to empowering youth “beyond mere tokenism, through creating and supporting conditions rich with opportunities and structure in which youth can rise to the task of self-enablement and sufficiency, acting on their own terms rather than aimlessly following at the directions of others.”

He said the theme, “Give Youth a Choice and Inspire Greatness”, fits well with his ministry’s mandate of empowering young people.

“The act of empowering our youth is only actualised when we equip them to create or make choices in life with knowledge of the implication of said choices,” Richards said, adding that “When our youth can make informed choices freely, take necessary actions based on the choices made and are willing and able to accept the outcomes of decisions made, it is only then that our youths would finally have been empowered.”

Minister Richards said there are many examples throughout St. Kitts and Nevis of what can be achieved when youth are empowered but said there is still much more work to be done.

“Youth forums are planned for establishment in 2016 where our youth can find a platform for contributing to issues of importance to their spheres of involvement and influence, with the formation of a Federation wide youth council being the eventual outcome,” he added.

Other highlights of Youth Month are a Teen Cyber Bullying Workshop on Thursday November 5th, the 25 Most Remarkable Teens Awards and a Making A Difference Everywhere Rally on November 14.

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