72 certified under alternative livelihood skills programme

Monday, September 16, 2019

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SEVENTY-TWO people from 10 communities in three parishes have been trained in air condition installation and maintenance, and certified under the Jamaica Social Investment Fund's (JSIF) Alternative Livelihood Skills Programme (ALSP).

The new technicians hail from Barrett Town in St James; Ellerslie Pen in St Catherine; and Rema, Denham Town, Maxfield Park, Rose Town, Tivoli Gardens, Hannah Town, Majesty Gardens, and Greenwich Town in Kingston.

Last Thursday, they were presented with their certificates at a graduation ceremony for the CAC 2000 Foundation/Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) Air Conditioning Technicians Training Programme, held at the AC Hotel in Kingston.

The graduates also received a toolkit and a one-year subscription for an online course in air conditioning.

The group, which included three females, completed the six-month course in seven different batches from July 2018 to July 2019. The training included a theoretical component that highlighted a basic understanding of the air conditioning system and components as well as repair procedures, to gain hands-on experience in the industry.

In his address at the ceremony, JSIF Managing Director Omar Sweeney said ALSP targets close to 6,000 youth in 18 underserved communities across seven parishes, and provides training in different areas, including film and digital animation.

He emphasised that training is offered in skills that are in demand, and that the programme is an alternative to assist at-risk youth.

The managing director noted that when the registration is being done in communities, many young people opt not to participate as they prefer to wait and see the benefits of the training.

“My simple message to you (Graduates) is that you represent the hope for the youth who never came and sign up that morning. It is important that you do well, and that is why we are prepared to continue to invest in you,” he said.

“This is not the end of your training, this is [a] mere step along the way,” Sweeney told them.

For her part, CAC 2000 Foundation Chief Executive Officer Gina Abraham said one of the main objectives of CAC 2000 Limited is to find a way to give back to at-risk youth in Jamaica, and to children with disabilities, in the area of education.

“The road to today has not been an easy one for many of us. However, we have persevered because of our belief that our youth have so much more to offer Jamaica when given the right opportunity,” she said.

She congratulated the graduates and urged them to “always remember that each day is a gift from above. So, make the most of it and never give up on your dreams”.

The top male performer, 24-year-old Javan Williams, during his testimonial, told the gathering that he signed up for the training after he dropped out of The University of the West Indies, after experiencing severe difficulties.

He expressed gratitude, on behalf of his fellow graduates, to the instructors who were very patient with them.

“I must say thanks to JSIF, as well as the CAC Foundation, which facilitated us throughout the entire programme,” Williams said.


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