Ministry of Youth to Reopen Mountain Pine Ridge Youth Challenge Facility Following Petition
The Ministry of Youth will be reopening the Mountain Pine Ridge Youth Challenge Facility after several parents launched a petition for a return of the program. The facility was opened this year as a part of the government’s multi-sectoral approach to crime and offered at-risk youth an opportunity to change their lives. But this month, the youth facility was closed due to infrastructural issues, and the enrolled youth returned home. However, the parents and their children believe that the positive impacts of the camp outweigh the minor issues and launched a petition for its return. And according to Minister of Youth, Rodwell Ferguson, the parents were informed yesterday that the facility will soon be back online.
Rodwell Ferguson, Minister of Sports: “The Mountain Pine Ridge Challenge is a very good program but it was open prematurely and we are taking young people there, young men in particular, between the age of 13 and 17 years old, take them out of society where we have to provide better services for them. And so the Justice Committee that reports to the Ministry of Human Development apparently went to do an investigation and they made certain recommendations to the Minister of Human Development and said that what is happening here is not adequate for the young people. So we need to revisit. And so I think last cabinet or two cabinets ago Minister Dolores took to the cabinet and said that we need to figure out what we are going to do with this. Cabinet looked at it as a very good program. So cabinet said you know what, let us revisit the program and figure out how we can fill the gaps and then reopen at a later date. So I believe very soon before September the Mountain Pine Ridge Challenge will be open again. My CEO met with the parents I think two days ago and said we it was a very good meeting and they understood the situation and they are prepared to go back whenever we are ready to open.”