$176.1 million for HEYS youths in 2019

DPI Guyana, November 26, 2018

Over $176.1 Million has been allocated to provide support through monitoring, grants and mentorship to allow hinterland youths to launch their micro-enterprises into vibrant economic activities.  These youths would have completed training under the Hinterland Employment and Youth Service (HEYS) programme.

This was announced by Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan during the 2019 National Budget presentation today. Minister Jordan explained that to date, the Coalition Government has contributed a total of $2.3 Billion to support the HEYS programme from 2016 to 2018. Through this initiative, a total of 2,054 small businesses have been established and managed by these young people.

Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan presenting the 2019 National Budget

Cohort One of the programme would have seen 752 small and micro businesses established, while Cohort Two, an additional 1,302 similar businesses. Youths participating in this programme have benefitted from life skills training, which allows them to become entrepreneurs.

Additionally, youth skills training will also be boosted in 2019, with the construction of the flagship Hinterland Green Enterprise Development Centre, at Bina Hill in Annai, Region Nine. This facility will benefit some 120 students.

Minister Jordan also announced that the government will be constructing a food processing facility at Bina Hill.  This facility will conduct the postharvest processing of the famous purple potato and other nutritional tubers like yams. The Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology (IAST) will provide assistance in training residents in the utilization of the technical machinery as well as conduct further processing into value-added products.

These initiatives will further mould the skills needed to develop Bina Hill and surrounding communities.  With the empowerment and skills transfer programmes, it is expected that products coming out of this area to be ready for the local market.

Synieka Thorne

Image: Department of Public Information

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