A cheque worth BDS $20,000 was today handed over to the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, to facilitate the Caribbean Vocational Qualifications (CVQs) programme in the areas of cosmetology and masonry at Grantley Adams Memorial School.

Speaking on behalf of parent company Eldorado Gold Corporation (Vancouver, British Columbia), Managing Director and President of Eldorado Gold (Barbados) Ltd., Robert Bourque, said he was impressed with the school when, on a recent tour, he saw the passion of students and teachers in their work.

Mr. Bourque, who noted that his company “would follow up with a further amount this year???, said there would be other initiatives ???to see if we can get the Grantley Adams Memorial School in a state that all of its students are proud of going to that school and learning and following the leadership and guidance of the Principal and teachers???.

He said he was proposing the establishment of The School Enhancement Charity – which would encompass all of the secondary schools, and would be happy to work with the Ministry.

???We???ve come forward as a corporate entity and we hope that it could lead to the establishing of the charity, and to being a template for others to follow???We believe, in years past, there was too much reliance on Government, be it in the medical arena, the school system or any other areas, and that is not a sustainable way of moving forward and growing the country. The private sector, which benefits from selling goods and services to all of the citizens of the land, must step forward and participate,??? he asserted.

Minister of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Ronald Jones, in accepting the cheque, described it as ???a start of greater things to happen??? at the Blackman???s, St. Joseph, institution, and noted that it would help uplift the work of students and the school in general.

Acknowledging that there were always levels of inequality, Mr. Jones said: ???In public education, we always try to reduce the level of inequality by the provision of equal resources generally across the schools to meet the needs and demands of the student population. But, it has never been enough; that is why civic organisations, businesses and philanthropic organisations have always looked to provide some level of assistance.???

The Education Minister also assured Mr. Bourque that he would work assiduously with the company to establish the framework for the proposed charity.??Eldorado Gold is an international gold company with subsidiary companies in Barbados, one of which is an insurance company. Headquartered in Canada, it operates in Turkey, Greece, China, Brazil and Romania, and has 14 mining operations around the world.


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