Minister For Equity Works To Establish Youth Service Centre

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St. Lucia – Minister for Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment Hon. Joachim Henry, continues to forge ahead with plans to establish a state-of-the-art Youth Service Centre that would cater to the pressing needs of Saint Lucia’s vulnerable youth.

The latest intervention occurred last week and saw Minister Henry again on the proposed site for the centre, the former George Charles Secondary School, which has begun being de-bushed and cleared as part of a significant retrofitting and transformation to becoming the new and modern Centre for Youth services inclusive of education and rehabilitation.

This time, a broad cross-section of stakeholders, comprised of technical experts like the architect, contractor, and personnel from human and social service agencies, joined Minister Henry. Related non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and women and children advocates formed a part of the comprehensive consultative process to arrive at the best possible ideas in advancing the construction, operations, and service delivery to the nation’s youth.

“I want to thank all those persons who expressed a willingness and commitment to this initiative- the critical stakeholders from the Ministry of Finance to heads of social service agencies. Dr. Venus Cherry of RISE and Catherine Sealys of Raise Your Voice contributed profoundly to this historic hybrid meeting. Well-respected social worker and child advocate Clemencia Eugene and the Saint Lucia Mission of Seventh-day Adventists Youth Director Pastor Richard Randolph attended. The varied groups and representatives made the discussions rich and informative,” noted Minister Henry.

Minister Henry says he and the Government of Saint Lucia remain committed to the transformation of the former George Charles Secondary School into a modern and well-staffed national Youth Service Centre that will replace not only the over 60-year-old Boys Training Centre but will also house institutions like the Upton Garden Girls Centre and the New Beginnings Transit Home.

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