A Government Minister has given an undertaking that his Ministry will design policies and programmes to empower the youth and build stronger communities across Barbados.

The promise came from the Minister of Community Development and Culture, Steven Blackett, while delivering the feature address at a youth soccer tournament awards ceremony at the Parkinson Memorial School last Saturday.

As part of this renewed effort to promote youth development, the Minister disclosed plans for another tour of Community Centres across the island to locate additional buildings and source other programmes. “Our goal is to ensure adequate island-wide access to Community Centres, community technology facilities and community empowerment programmes.  Hence, the process will also involve identifying and meeting people’s needs and implementing an approved plan of action,” Mr. Blackett explained. 

Underscoring the importance of sporting activities in communities, he alluded to a sponsor who indicated an interest in providing major sponsorship for sporting activities in Pinelands. “The Barbados Government welcomes and encourages public/private sector partnerships and we applaud all who accept the challenge and give back to the communities. By doing this, you would have assisted in building a stronger and more cohesive nation,” he observed.

The Culture Minister lauded Pine residents for unifying the community through sports and he credited Anthony Bonnett, of the Ministry of Social Care and Constituency Development, and. Colin Harewood, of the Community Development Department, for conceptualising the soccer tournament.

A number of teams were rewarded for their heroics on the field during the Community Development Department, Tiger Malt Reginald Brathwaite and Wayne “Poser” Leacock competition that began on August 20.

In the Under-15 Division, Regents Soccer Academy emerged victorious while the Christ Church-based Pride of Gall Hill and St. John Sonics copped the second and third prizes respectively.

Pride of Gall Hill were also in winners row in the Under-17 Division as they trounced Melbourne out of Haynesville, St. James and Regents Soccer Academy into second and third place respectively..

In the Under-23 Division, Academics copped the first spot, while Underground, Poser United and Boca United placed second, third and fourth respectively.

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