(US Embassy) – USAID held a graduation ceremony at the Critchlow Labour College to honor 71 youth who completed work and life skills training through the USAID Skills and Knowledge for Youth Employment (SKYE) Project.
The SKYE program, funded through the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI), equips young Guyanese with market-driven skills and improves their ability to gain and keep employment, reintegrates youth offenders into their communities, and collaborates with government and non-government partners to strengthen the environment for youth development.
The SKYE program supports youth who are secondary school dropouts, young people who have completed formal education but require additional skills in order to gain employment, and youth in the juvenile justice system. Through such CBSI partnerships, the United States and Guyana seek to ensure that young people in Guyana and throughout the Caribbean have the economic opportunity to build productive lives and contribute to their countries.
Through the CBSI-funded SKYE program, 1,016 Guyanese youth have thus far completed life and work skills training, 360 of which have been placed into full-time employment to date.
The life and work skills imparted to youth through the training include communications, team building, interview techniques, resumé writing, and financial management.
U.S. Ambassador D. Brent Hardt and Goldie Scott, Chief Executive Officer of the Volunteer Youth Corps, were present at the ceremony. In addressing the graduates and their families, Ambassador Hardt commended the young people “for taking the initiative to be involved in the program” and thanked their coaches and mentors for their dedication to ensuring the graduates find good jobs.
The Ambassador encouraged the youth to play a role in the country’s development, and to help others in their respective communities. The Ambassador pointed out that the program is widely recognized and respected by employers for producing talented, dedicated, and effective employees.