Director of Youth Empowerment Geoffrey Hanley welcomed the delegates and participants to the Cana-Caribe on Wednesday evening, (21st September, 2011). The Peace-building and Leadership Training Meeting is scheduled to run from September 21 to 25. The event is sponsored by the Commonwealth Youth Programme, Commonwealth Secretariat. Youths from Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago St. Kitts and Nevis are being represented at the event.
Crystal Alexander Cana-Caribe Chairperson explained that the timing of the project was strategic, given the upsurge of antisocial behaviour over the last two years.
Commonwealth studies have revealed youth as the primary perpetrators or victims. Ms Alexander congratulated the participants for standing up to “lead the charge in creating a more peaceful, just and prosperous society” by undertaking the peace building and leadership courses of the sessions.
Dwynette Eversley Acting Regional Director of the Commonwealth Youth Programme Caribbean Center (CYPCC) explained that the entity is very proud of this programme.
Ms. Eversley said “This programme calls for the young people who are participating to develop Action Plans which are national but community based, and which feed into a Regional Plan. I can indicate at the level of the CYPCC that we are going to be prepared to continue to support the development of a pilot, into a sustainable project over a three year period.”
Minister of Youth Mr. Glenn Phillip stressed that the Government was delighted to be associated with this programme given its commitment to provide positive alternatives for persons involved in social vices.
“This fire of Cana-Caribe 2011 will be ignited here in Basseterre to provide the light of information and warmth of inclusion not only for the communities of St. Kitts and Nevis but … for the farer reaches of our Region and our hemisphere,” he stressed. Minister Phillip wished the delegates well and said that he would eagerly await the report of outcomes.