St. Kitts And Nevis Expands Gender Inclusivity Through New Vocational Training Initiative With Taiwan Technical Mission

The Honourable Isalean Phillip.
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Basseterre, St. Kitts – The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis, in partnership with the Taiwan Technical Mission, launched an innovative project aimed at promoting sustainable development and gender inclusivity. The ceremony marking the commencement of the project was held at the CUNA Conference Center on Tuesday, April 16, 2024.

The Honourable Isalean Phillip.

Building on the successes of the 2021 Women Employment Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion Project, this new initiative provides vocational training in traditionally male-dominated fields, such as construction. It also broadens its scope by encouraging male participation. This holistic approach is designed to foster a more inclusive workforce in the Federation.

“We want to be inclusive in our efforts and we can’t talk about advancing women and leave the men behind. That is why we thought about this project in terms of how we could expand it to not only focus on women, but also empower men who will be interested,” explained the Honourable Isalean Phillip, Minister of Social Development and Gender Affairs. “It is also an opportunity for women to get training and skills in sectors and jobs that are traditionally male-dominated.”

In addition to gender inclusivity, the project integrates youth involvement through a collaboration with Junior Achievers, a business development programme implemented locally in high schools since 2004.

“Junior Achievers as a regional organisation also approached us to partner, and we are incorporating a junior achievers cohort segment as part of this project, where we are not only targeting women and men, but also the youth,” Minister Phillip added.

His Excellency Michael Lin, Resident Ambassador of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to St. Kitts and Nevis, highlighted the broader societal impact of the project:

“We all recognise that in St. Kitts and Nevis, more than 50 percent of households are by single parents. When women are empowered, they are not only uplifting themselves, but also their families, their community and moreover the whole society,” said Ambassador Lin. “This is a reason why our two governments decided to implement this project and raise more resources… that will benefit more families in St. Kitts and Nevis. Three years later, we are witnessing the fruitful achievement of this project.”

Since its inception, the Women Employment Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion Project has facilitated a wide array of vocational training courses in trades, digital technology, culinary arts, and cosmetics, significantly enhancing local skill sets and employment opportunities.

Minister Phillip used the opportunity to extend special thanks to the Government and people of the Republic of China (Taiwan), represented by His Excellency Lin, for their ongoing partnership. She highlighted their significant contributions to gender equality, women’s empowerment, and the strengthening of families and communities. Minister Phillip also emphasised their role in enhancing economic development and driving social transformation across St. Kitts and Nevis.

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