The Commonwealth Secretariat report that came out at the end of July revealed that Belize has been placing very little importance on youth work. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister responsible for Youth, Patrick Faber has rejected some of the findings in the study. The Department of Youth Services is making an effort to professionalize the youth work sector. As a result, the department conducted several training sessions this week facilitated by International Youth Development Expert, Henry W. Charles under the theme “Understanding Youth Development.” Love News spoke to Senior Youth Development Officer, Kera Bowen Polonio who tells us more
Senior Youth Development Officer, Kera Bowen Polonio:
“Today we are having a training for frontline youth workers an introductory course to youth development work. On Tuesday we had the same training for the heads of different organizations who work with young people and it’s basically to develop capacity amongst ourselves as youth workers and to strategize and coordinate amongst ourselves. As the management staff and senior staff here at the department we also had planning session with Dr.Henry Charles who is an international youth development specialist he also writes courses for the University of the West Indies and he is currently helping us to develop a curriculum for us to have our youth workers and frontline workers certified to work in this specific field.”
The objective of the training includes enhancing the capacity of Youth Development Agencies, Develop a Strategic Youth Development Action Plan and Develop a Youth Mainstreaming in Development Planning Strategy. When it comes to the crime situation facing our youths, the Youth Department is collaborating and coordinating with its stakeholders to address the issue.