HEART/NSTA pushes volunteerism

HEART/NSTA pushes volunteerism

Sunday, February 23, 2020

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The Human Employment and Resource Training/National Service Training Agency (HEART/NSTA) Trust is seeking to build civic responsibility amongst Jamaicans through its volunteer programme.

The initiative is designed to facilitate enhanced communities, as well as bring about personal development enrichment and networking opportunities.

So far, almost 8,000 volunteers have registered under the programme.

Acting senior director of Community Services at the HEART/NSTA Trust, Ronique Rhoden, tells JIS News that the initiative is one of the flagship programmes of the newly rebranded agency.

“Volunteerism was always something that the National Youth Service(NYS) did in all its programming. And now that we have merged, we have expanded volunteerism and made it into a full-blown programme,” she explains.

“So now we accommodate persons of all ages. Now that the mandate has expanded, we are able to treat with not only youth, but all persons interested in being volunteers and to really contribute to the growth of the country,” Rhoden adds.

Volunteers have, so far, given of their service in a number of initiatives, such as the CARIFTA Games, and the national dengue clean-up, which was held January 24, 25 and 26.

The senior director tells JIS News that individuals are able to choose the area of service in which they want to participate — environmental and administrative, service to the homeless and seniors, education service and advocacy.

“Quite a number of young people who have volunteered in the programme met their next employer and their next business partner. Even though we have a mentorship programme, there is some avenue for mentorship through volunteerism as well. You get to contribute to your country and you learn new skills that can become certifiable,” she says.

“Employers now are not only looking for qualification… but what differentiates you from [that] someone else, and volunteerism has been what employers are now looking for to see how you contribute and how you value your time,” she adds.

Those interested in being a part of the programme may do so by contacting the HEART/NSTA Trust at volunteers@heart-nta.org or via telephone at (876) 929-3410 or (876) 754-9816-8.

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