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Taiwan releases funds for Yes Programme

Taiwan releases funds for Yes Programme


Taiwan has made an early release of funds to continue this country’s Youth Empowerment Service (YES) and the Learning Resource Centre projects.{{more}}

This comes a few weeks after St.Vincent and the Grenadines was awarded for having the best practice for its YES programme among 30 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Taiwan’s Ambassador to St.Vincent and the Grenadines Leo Lee presented a cheque for EC$2 million to Prime Minister Dr.Ralph Gonsalves on Wednesday, October 14, 2009.

Lee disclosed that his country was prompted to make an early release of EC$2 million for the second and third phases of 2009 because it was quite impressed with the YES programme’s performance.

Just last month, it was announced that the YES programme, launched on Tuesday, August 21, 2001, by the Unity Labour Party led Government, as part of its strategy to tackle youth unemployment and poverty reduction, had been awarded a best practice in youth policies and programmes.

Lee confirmed that the YES programme’s recent assessment as a best practice among Latin American and Caribbean countries by the Inter American Bank and other international organizations also played a role in the speedy release of the funds.

“Our government is more than happy to release the funds earlier than scheduled,” said an emphatic Lee.

He commended Gonsalves for his leadership and that of the ministries in charge of the programme.

Gonsalves expressed thanks to Ambassador Lee as well as to the people of Taiwan for their assistance towards the programmes. Each year St.Vincent and the Grenadines receives US$2 million from Taiwan to execute its social intervention programmes.

The YES programme targets unemployed, unskilled or semi-skilled youths between the ages of 16 to thirty-nine and provides them with valid work experience, an income via a stipend, training and opportunities to advance socially and economically.

To date, 461 persons have already received on-the-job training and formal training through workshops and training seminars.

Gonsalves also used Wednesday’s presentation to announce that the assistance from Taiwan was increased by US$500,000 upon a request that he made to President Ma Ying-jeou.

He said that in his opinion, except for the Kingstown Vegetable Market constructed under the New Democratic Party administration, every project spearheaded by his administration with funds from Taiwan has been successful.

Taiwan has also assisted the government with the construction of the Rabacca Bridge, the National Library Project, the proposed international airport, the Cross Country Road, the Technical and Vocational Centre, scholarships, a section of road at Browne’s Town, among many other projects. (HN)