Second batch of PRYME applications ramping up
Droves of people are flocking to the Centre for Enterprise Development (CED) office in Kingstown in the hopes of benefitting from the PRYME programme.
And the upcoming launch of the PRYME website and virtual application format will allow interested persons to sign up from the comfort of their homes.
The programme, which is intended to help youths to build their micro-enterprises, presented its first set of grants to 80 persons on May 19.
“It’s ramping up now in the second batch in terms of the applications I understand that are coming in,” Anthony Regisford, the chairman of the PRYME Steering Committee told SEARCHLIGHT.
He said it seems that interest has grown and response from the public has been good.
Regisford believes that the publicity around last week’s awards ceremony may have contributed to the increased interest.
He hopes that launch of the website — hopefully within the next 10 days — will help to manage the increasing crowd at the CED office.
“We’re going to soon, by the end of next week I hope, but hopefully before that, we’re going to have an online application, a fully integrated online application, not where you can go online and download the application form,” Regisford said.
He added: “we are going to try to take some of the physical traffic, people having to come into town to pick up a form and then getting it filled out and bringing it back”.
The chairman explained that persons will be able to fill out the application via the website, and submit it with supporting documents, making the process easier and more convenient.
He added that the website will also have guidelines on how to apply and other information related to PRYME.
Regisford said the online platform will also make processing less manual and easier as well.
And he is encouraging interested persons to use the online platform, once it becomes available.
According to the chairman, the steering committee is expected to meet today, Friday to overview a list of applications, which will be sent to Cabinet for approval.
There are three tiers of grants under the PRYME programme.
This includes grants for an amount below $5000, between $5000 and $15,000 and between $15,000 and up to $40,000.
Regisford said the grants are mixture of cash and other inputs, like equipment.
“It’s not all cash. So for example, if somebody wants a weed wacker, a pressure washer and those things are being bought locally, then we deal with the vendor. It’s a process.”
The PRYME programme was initially designed for persons between 18 and 40 years old. But due to the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on existing businesses, grants are also available for persons over 40 via PRYME Plus, as well as those in the creative industry that have been affected.