Forty-Seven Youth Club Assistants Trained

Date Published: 
Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Forty-seven young persons from across the island were recently trained as Youth Club Assistants (YCAs) through the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information's Charge Up Project. The training was jointly implemented by the Ministry's Youth and Adolescents Policy Division (YAPD), the LEGS Programme and HEART Trust/NTA. The YCAs will now be deployed to work with inactive youth clubs islandwide, and will provide technical and administrative support to these clubs.

The recruitment of YCAs comes on the heels of research from the YAPD on youth clubs in Jamaica. The research pointed to a seventy per cent (70%) decline in the number of youth clubs islandwide since 1998. Further, the information revealed that a number of existing clubs faced leadership and administrative challenges which threathen their viability and sustainability.

 

Youth Club Assistants with Floyd Green, State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information

 

As one part of the response, the Ministry has sought to recruit, train and deploy YCAs who will work with youth clubs to address key challenges identified. Through their work, the YCAs will conduct further assessments of the clubs to which they have been assigned, and will develop strategies towards the growth and sustenance of the club. Importantly, YCAs are expected to work on fundraising strategies and community projects with their clubs.

In preparation for their assignment, the one-week residential training session held at Tapioca Village in St. Mary sought to build the capacities of YCAs in a number of areas. The youth leaders were exposed to sessions on youth engagement and group facilitation, social enterprise and fundraising, meeting management and administration and project planning and management. As the YCAs are participants in the Government of Jamaica's National Service Corps., they also received mandatory core training in life skills, citizenship, work ethics and discipline.

YCAs will be engaged for a period of one year. 

Youth Empowerment Officer Sharlene Mattocks Bent explained that the participants demonstrated satisfactory levels of competence in the key knowledge, core competency and technical competency areas covered during the training sessions. Next steps include deployment to youth clubs in all parishes, and continued training through Youth Empowerment Officers in each parish.