Minister of Labour and Social Partnership Relations, Colin Jordan (far right), and Permanent Secretary, Dr. Karen Best (2nd from left, first row) pose for a photograph with the first set of graduates for Government’s Job Start Plus Initiative and officials of the Ministry of Labour.

Young persons who graduated from the first set of training under Government’s Job Start Plus Initiative have been assured that they will be guided in their search for employment.

Minister of Labour and Social Partnership Relations, Colin Jordan, gave this assurance last Friday as 38 young people between the ages of 16 and 24 received certificates of participation under the initiative’s pilot training, at the Warrens Office Complex.

“You have made a commitment, and similarly we have made a commitment as a Ministry and as a government.  Our commitment to you is that we will do our best to make sure first that you are equipped for the workplace,” the Minister said.

Highlighting the role played by the Barbados Employment and Career Counselling Service (BECCS) in the two-week training, Minister Jordan commended BECCS and noted that it existed for all Barbadians in need of counselling and guidance, in relation to careers. 

He stressed it was the organization “with the mandate of preparing people … for the work place and the world of work” and during the training would have provided knowledge on how to write a résumé and cover letters, as well as counselled the youth.

The Labour Minister said that the Job Start Plus Initiative came out of the Human Resource Development Implementation and Monitoring Unit, which strategizes about how to reduce youth unemployment.

“It is too high, but we just can’t say it is too high.  We have to do something about it because you and others like you are frustrated every day; having gone through the school system; having completed your life in a learning environment and coming out into a world where the opportunities seem limited. Government took the decision that we needed to intensify our efforts in this regard to allow you the opportunity to get some work experience, and that is where job Start Plus was born,” he said.

The HRDS Unit has responsibility for Government’s HRD Strategy, the objective of which is to actively create a national human resource development culture across sectors, promote life-long learning habits and develop multi-skilled citizens who possess strong numeracy, literacy and employability skills.

The first training under the programme ran from December 9 to 13, 2019, while the second was held from January 20 to 24, this year.

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