$93.3M expended to fund hinterland scholarship students in 2023

774 students were enrolled in the programme last year

With education being a paramount priority for the government, the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs has expended some $93.3 million in 2023 to fund students under the Hinterland Scholarship Programme.

“Last year the up-keep for the scholarship students was $93.3 million. There is other support that they will get from time to time from the government that is not necessarily from this budget because the government gives them subsidies too for examination etcetera,” Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai stated.

Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Pauline Sukhai and one of the hinterland scholarship students at a graduation ceremony

Minister Sukhai made the statement during a recent year-end media engagement at her Thomas and Quamina Streets, Georgetown office.

Of the $93.3 million, a sum of $1.9 million was spent on the ministry’s dormitory programme, while another $1.6 million was exhausted on assisting students with school projects, and $15.6 million on transportation costs. 

Additionally, $23.1 million in pocket allowance went towards the scholars in 2023, while $8.8 million was spent on uniform allowance and $13.2 million in dorm allowance.

It was also revealed by the minister that a total of $16.6 million went into guardianship for the students.

According to Minister Sukhai, monies were also spent on various administrative costs.

“Last year we had a total of 774 students enrolled in our scholarship programme. This is taking us to another level beyond where we were in 2015,” the minister stated.

She explained that from 2020 to 2022 the scholarship programme had fewer students being enrolled due to COVID-19.

Minister Sukhai noted that the ministry remains committed to ensuring that every child’s need under the Hinterland Scholarship Programme is met, even though they might not be placed at the main hinterland dormitory in Region Four.