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Youth awardees told journey has just begun

Youth awardees told journey has just begun

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Recipients of this year’s Annual National Youth Awards have been told that being awarded does not mean their journey has ended as nation builders.{{more}}

Saskia Diamond, feature speaker at Monday’s awards ceremony, encouraged the awardees to continue their good work and perform well, even in the face of challenges.

“This award this morning doesn’t mean that you have arrived, awardees or you have done it all. But it means that you have what it takes to press on.

Because you have already started beating the odds and overcoming the challenges. Always adopt a humble attitude. And never work towards gaining recognition, but ensure that what you do is an encouragement to other.

“Be ambassadors where ever you go,” Diamond told the gathering at Frenches House.

She further implored them to know their limitations and weaknesses and to work within them, but always work towards overcoming them.

Total dedication, discipline and commitment are therefore necessary, she said.

“Yes we are faced with the issues of unemployment and crime, among others. But rest assured that it is your decision-making ideas that can resolve these issues. You have a part to play in building and improving the quality of your lives and those around you.

“Get involved. Become a voice in your schools, churches and the communities. It is never too early to start making meaningful contributions. Be encouraged by those who have left positive footprints in the sand and walk within those footprints,” she added.

The awards ceremony, which took place under the theme “Vincentian Youth using positive energies to impact St Vincent and the Grenadines”, saw 16 youths and five institutions receiving awards in recognition of their performances and contribution towards nation building.

Winners of the awards include: Olex Anderson (Football), Jahmal Small (VolleyBall), Ruth-Ann Williams (Netball), Nikolas Sylvester (Swimming), Brandon Parris (Athletics), Kevin Hannaway (Squash), Ronniefa Clarke (Dance), Tamara Woodley (Drama), Trevonette Johnson (Tourism), Marla Nanton (Music), Kamara Jerome (Science & Technology) and Dominic Frederick (Entrepreneurship).

Special recognition awards went to Jacqueline Nelson-Lowe by the School for Children with Special Needs, Jurani Roberts by the Liberty Lodge Boys Training Centre, and awards for Adult Contribution to Youth Development went to Sergeant Meldon James and retired school teacher Ian Sardine.

A number of St Vincent and the Grenadines corporate citizens were also recognized for their contribution to the development of the nation’s youth through support to the various programmes of the Youth Affairs Department.

These persons and institutions are: Marlon “Bullie” Llewellyn, Allan’s Family Bakery, Island Vibz Radio, Hitz FM, and the Bethel Gospel Assembly of Nova Scotia, Canada.

Minister of Youth Frederick Stevenson said the government of St Vincent and the Grenadines remains committed towards implementing programmes geared towards the development of young people.

Stevenson said his Ministry recognizes the importance of youth to the development of the nation, and hinted at programmes including the MAP (men as partners) empowerMENt programme, Youth Empowerment Service (YES) Programme, programmes in sport, agriculture and creative industries, along with the establishment of Learning Resource Centres. (AA)

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