Youth participating in this year’s Youth Achieving Results (YAR) Programme, consisting of the Performing Arts as well as the Visual Arts, have been encouraged to use the programme as a stepping stone to build their professional careers.
The advice came recently from Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley, as he delivered remarks at the launch of the YAR Programme, at the 3Ws Oval, at the UWI Cave Hill Campus.
“The Youth Achieving Results Programme cannot be seen as a programme in isolation. You need to see it in the context of the development of your professional careers, even though you are starting, as we call it in Barbados, small,” Minister Lashley told those gathered.
“You are starting on a journey of ensuring that you are skilled and brought up to date on the various essential ingredients of the cultural industries and I have seen many young people enter this programme and go on to do significant work afterwards,” the Minister added.
Stressing that there are many opportunities in the exciting field of the cultural industries, Minister Lashley stated his belief that the YAR Programme will pay dividends.
“The sky is the limit and I want to encourage you to not only accept and take advantage of what will happen over the next (few) days or so, but see this as a stepping stone along your journey, to make a career out of the cultural industries,” he said.
The YAR Programme is an initiative of the Youth Development Programme in the Division of Youth and it is facilitated by the National Cultural Foundation. Speaking to aspects of the programme, NCF’s Chief Cultural Officer Andrea Wells noted that the YAR Performing Arts students will be afforded opportunities for stage management assignments within the festivals that the NCF produces, while those undertaking the YAR Visual Arts programme will be afforded the opportunity to display and sell products during the upcoming Bridgetown Market event during Crop Over.
Principal Youth Development Officer, John Hollingsworth, noted that the programme will run over the next seven months and participants in both programmes will receive extensive training.
Sessions will be held at the Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church in Roebuck Street as well as the Pelican Craft Village, he said and participants will get the opportunity to showcase what they have learnt in November, as the country celebrates its 50th Anniversary of Independence.