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Ycare International Africa Coordinator speaks

Sep 29, 2011, 12:41 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

Sarah Hunt of Ycare International Africa has been speaking on a wide range of issues relating to youth development. Hunt is program coordinator for the Young Men Christian Association-sponsored projects, and granted an interview to this reporter at the just-concluded YMCA employment summit.

Hunt said that at the global level, the financial crisis, among others, pose a threat to employment, and as a result the focus should be more on providing the youths training for self-employment.

She called on all to acquire the skills, technology, and social network needed in the job market, and to move away from the traditional jobs, where there is saturation in the market.

According to her, YCare is the international development and relief arm of the YMCA movement in UK and Ireland.

“We have been working with YMCA The Gambia for over 20 years now, on issues addressing reproductive health, drugs and alcohol, and a livelihood inclusive project,” said the program coordinator.

“As an organization, we have gone through a five-year development organization strategy, and looked at five things that are relevant for the young people namely, safe and secured livelihood, health and well-being, addressing the culture of crime and youth justice, as well as disaster risk reduction and emergency response,” she further explained.

The Gambia YMCA has secured funding from BLF in UK with support from the Ycare International, according to Ms Hunt, who expressed satisfaction with the projects implemented in The Gambia, and commended the Gambia YMCA for their efforts.

“There were successes as well as challenges, and we have developed solutions around those challenges as well,” she continued.

Ms Hunt said the youth employment summit is an important step in addressing issues regarding youths. It was an opportunity to raise awareness about issues affecting them, as well as an avenue that brought policy makers and stake holders together, while availing youths the opportunity to engage and debate.

He urged the young Gambians to continue the hard work, and to get more engaged.