Youths in region six thriving on small businesses

– beneficiaries of the HEYS programme

– many now in the position to benefit from SBB loans/grants

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, September 11, 2018

More youths are expected to benefit from the Hinterland Employment and Youth Service (HEYS) programme in the Siparuta, East Berbice-Corentyne region, as another sixteen youngsters have embarked on the 2018/2019 programme.

Councillor for the Region Six village, Kingsley Hutson said the students are eager to start the course. He explained that judging from the number of small businesses established by the 2017/2018 beneficiaries, the programme has been a success in the region.

Some of the new ventures resulting from the programme include block-making, a joinery, grocery shop and bakery. “From a total of sixteen persons, more than half of them have businesses,” Hutson said.

During a recent visit to Region Six, Minster of Business, Dominic Gaskin conducted outreaches in the communities of Orealla and Siparuta. Though the HEYS programme is not within his portfolio, the minister commended the beneficiaries on the establishment of their small businesses.

Minister Gaskin told the council that armed with the additional knowledge and skills from the HEYS programme and with thriving small enterprises, youths in the villages can now apply for the Ministry’s Small Business Bureau grants or loans.

“I think is it important that when the opportunities for grants/funding are available in the village, that you as the councillors make sure the right people get them…it is for persons to further their businesses and become independent within a year,” Minister Gaskin said.

Owner of Trevon’s Snackette, Trevon Morris said he is indebted to the programme, “I find that it is good because it helped me in setting up my business. The training was excellent. It taught me how to manage my business very well.” Morris looks forward to expanding his snackette as the response has been positive.

Vicky Williams, part of the 2016/2017 HEYS programme, described the course as life-changing. She said, “I am operating a gas service and it is lucrative since several vehicles and equipment require gas to operate. This is indeed a good business venture.”

With a team from the Small Business Bureau (SBB) scheduled to visit the region before the end of September, Minister Gaskin advised the council and small business owners to share their ideas in order to benefit from the ministry’s access to finance programmes.

Toshao of Orealla, Carl Peneux said the residents in the aforementioned villages welcomed the SBB team and look forward to establishing and enhancing small businesses.

By: Crystal Stoll.

Images: Anil Seelall.


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