May 21, 2020, 12:09 PM
In his State of the Nation Address for the opening of the 2020 Legislative Year at the National Assembly on Thursday 17 September, the President of Republic of The Gambia and commander-in-chief of the Gambia Armed Forces, His Excellency Adama Barrow has disclosed another important avenue where the creative industries can benefit from.
President Barrow in delivering his statement said he was happy to inform the creative industries that the Periodic Report on the UNESCO 2008 Convention on Cultural Expressions signed by The Gambia in 2011 was adopted.
This report “was adopted by the UNESCO sub-committee on the Convention,” he said and this means that “the door is now open for The Gambia creative industries to benefit from the UNESCO International Fund for Cultural Diversity,” President Barrow disclosed.
His Excellency Adama Barrow went on that since the change of government in 2017, the arts and culture subsectors have been boosted in relation to participation and investment.
According to him, in the year under review, the National Centre for Arts and Culture benefitted from and successfully executed a grant from the UNESCO Country participation programme to train twenty-four (24) Gambian youths on entrepreneurship in the creative industries.
In addition to that, President Barrow added that through the European Union funded Youth Empowerment Project (YEP), a three-year project on Youth and the Creative Industries was launched to facilitate capacity building and funding for youths who are active in the media arts, fashion, music and audio-visual enterprises.
The president, however, disclosed that his government’s policy to promote rural and eco-tourism are underway to construct a forty-bedroom four-star Eco-Lodge at Fort Bullen on the North Bank.
“This will be the first of its kind in rural Gambia. The Gambia Tourism Board intends to construct four similar facilities in each region. These facilities are expected to create job opportunities to the rural youth and trigger in-country tourism,” he assured.
He went on that when all these programmes are linked with those mentioned earlier it will become evident that “the government is serious about addressing the plight of our youth, especially by reducing unemployment.”
The president therefore encouraged youth to make the most of these opportunities.
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