Jul 23, 2008, 6:48 AM
The honourable Secretary of State for Youth and Sports Sheriff M.L Gomez on Saturday May 23rd presided over the official commissioning of the Young Men's Christian Association YMCA youth micro finance scheme. The theme of the commissioning held at the
Speaking on the occasion, the youth Secretary of State said that the economic empowerment of young people is a fundamental element for sustainable economic growth and nation building.
According to him, skills training for young people will go a long way in supporting their independence and responsible participation in the emancipation of their communities. "Giving young people free vocational life skills training is in itself a laudable and daunting task and matching it with a micro finance component which provides free input upon completion of loan repayment is another added unique responsibility". He commended the Gambia YMCA for complementing government's efforts in empowering youths while assuring them of his office's continuing support.
He advised those who will benefit from the loan to respect the loan agreement thus repaying it on time to allow more people benefit from the initiative.
For his part, Mr. Joseph Peacock Big Lottery Fund Project Coordinator indicated that they have developed a holistic program that would give economic empowerment to young people as this is key and vital to building a sustainable and youth friendly environment.
He revealed that an independent micro finance committee has assessed every application received and has decided to recommend the first set of beneficiaries to the BLF Funded Project Office for disbursement.