BNTF 9 – improving the lives of vulnerable Guyanese 

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, April 3, 2019

The ninth cycle of the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) project in Guyana will see a host of programmes being executed to raise the standards of living of the country’s most vulnerable.

From education, health, basic community access and drainage to water sanitation, commerce, skills training and capacity building, BNTF has been changing the lives of Guyanese living in the most vulnerable situations.

Project Manager of the BNTF, Guyana, Dikedemma Utoh.

The BNTF 9 Guyana project commenced on June 20, 2017, with a grant totalling one billion dollars. BNTF’s Guyana Project Manager, Dikedemma Utoh said the entity is at the final leg of the cycle’s planning stage. According to Utoh, there are over 36 interventions for communities across Guyana. These include water and sanitation, community capacity projects with the Board of Industrial Training (BIT), and other educational and infrastructural programmes.

“Our target is really poor and vulnerable communities across Guyana. Wherever these communities exist we go in and try to make interventions to improve the conditions of our fellow citizens,” Utoh told the Department of Public Information (DPI) today.

The BNTF is a grant-funded programme of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). While the CDB lays out areas of focus for the programme, during the ninth cycle, implementing agency the Ministry of Finance has been focusing primarily on projects that will lift persons out of poverty.

“What you find is that most of our projects are linked to some form of human capacity development or livelihood improvement.”

The water and sanitation project will be executed in several Rupununi communities including Rupertee, Rowetta and Shulinab. The agency will be working with the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) and the respective village councils to see the projects to completion.

The BIT project will include several programmes across the 10 administrative regions.

Although started 40 years ago, Guyana began receiving funding in 1993. An implementing agency of the Ministry of Finance, the BNTF has so far executed some 600 sub-projects in all sectors.

Alexis Rodney.

Images: Kawise Wishart.