Rose Hall residents urged to tap into SBB grants to raise living standards

Residents of Rose Hall, East Berbice Corentyne, were on Monday urged to apply for grants through the Small Business Bureau (SBB) to enhance their entrepreneurial endeavours and living standards.

The call was made during community engagements led by Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr. Vindhya Persaud, and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hugh Todd.

Rose Hall Resident, Ms. Shaneeza Khan

Mother of five, Ms. Andrea Cort told DPI that she is excited to resuscitate her business should she qualify for the SBB grant.

Ms. Cort said, “I’m willing to open up back my business because I used to be selling at Port Mourant Market and Rose Hall [Market].”

The Rose Hall native who lauded the advice of Minister Persaud is no stranger to government initiatives that empower women.

She has successfully completed a four-month course that has certified her to care for the elderly and sick.

Another resident, Ms. Shaneeza Khan also welcomed the guidance she received applying for the grant.

Ms. Khan related that she is a single mom, and it is better to have multiple streams of income to take care of her family.

Rose Hall Resident, Ms. Andrea Cort

Commending the outreach, Ms. Khan added, “we needed this a long time in Region Six, and I think it is good idea having the ministers in the region… because they [residents] get to share their thoughts and ideas.”

For Ms. Yonnette Clarke, the SBB grant would unlock opportunities for business expansion.

“I recently collected 20 black giant chickens from NAREI [National Agriculture Research Institute] … So, we need to go out more into it,” Ms. Clarke explained.

According to the self-employed resident, plans are afoot to rare other livestock such as ducks.

Speaking on the importance of the SBB grants to entrepreneurs, Ms. Clarke noted, “a lot of people would appreciate that people are willing to do things, to do something to help themselves… We have a lot of farmlands. We can go to the farm- go to the land to keep ourselves occupied.”

Speaking on the sidelines of a walkabout at Rose Hall market, Minister Persaud added that she was pleased to steer residents in the right direction, concerning the steps needed to apply for the SBB grants.

While noting that residents were briefed on the numerous opportunities for advancement through her ministry’s Women Innovation and Investment Network (WIIN), Minister Persaud said the SBB has the potential to catapult the careers of WIIN graduates.

“Now if they can use the nexus between the [SBB] and the Ministry of Human services, they need to take the next step, now that you are armed with the training, now that you have been also trained in business literacy… then head to the small business bureau and ‘take the plunge’.”

Minister Persaud further stated that women should take advantage of the WIIN programme since it is filled with a variety of courses, for which there will be new releases very soon.