Insurance Corporation of Barbados Limited (ICBL) Assistant Manager, Felicia Bowen and Owner of Fashion Nation and Market Fresh, Joanne Sherry interacting with participants of the “Get Hired” event. (S. Forde-Craigg)

“Get Hired”, an initiative offered by the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment, in partnership with the Prince’s Trust International, is being heralded as the perfect “one-stop-shop” for youth seeking employment.

This is according to the coordinator of the Pathways & Prince’s Trust Employability’s Programmes, Senior Youth Commissioner, Elizabeth Bowen.

Noting that “Get Hired” was geared towards persons between ages 18 and 25, Ms. Bowen explained: “We know that many of our youth are currently looking for work, so we’ve created a ‘one-stop-shop’ where persons receive guidance in areas such as how to prepare a curriculum vita; what to expect in an interview, and work ethics. And then, we provide them with the avenue to meet employers who have vacant posts within their organisations.”

The “Get Hired” initiative was originally introduced by the United Kingdom’s leading charity for young people, The Prince’s Trust.  It was described by Prince’s Trust International, as a way to bridge the gap between businesses looking for a low cost, time- efficient recruitment process and young people who are ready to move into work, but struggling to access the right opportunities.

The “Get Hired” initiative was originally introduced by the United Kingdom’s leading charity for young people, The Prince’s Trust. It was described by Prince’s Trust International, as a way to bridge the gap between businesses looking for a low cost, time- efficient recruitment process and young people who are ready to move into work, but struggling to access the right opportunities.

Ms. Bowen disclosed that various businesses participate in the programme, including those providing uniformed and construction services.

On the first day of the recently held “Get Hired” event in Sky Mall’s Training Room, at Haggatt Hall, St. Michael, 16 young persons participated in the Empowerment and Preparation Workshop.  On day two, they heard a presentation from Assistant Manager, Insurance Corporation of Barbados Limited (ICBL), Felicia Bowen, and the employer’s pitch from owner of Fashionation and Market Fresh, Joanne Sherry. Afterwards, the 16 young persons were interviewed for available positions at Fashionation and Market Fresh.

During her empowerment presentation, Ms. Bowen revealed that in partnering with the Ministry, through the “Get Hired” programme, ICBL had hired three persons, who are still employed there. 

She also shared five tips for success with the participants.  Tip one was that they should decide whether they want to be a “worker bee” and work for someone, or be an entrepreneur. 

Tip two was for them to have good friends and partners. She explained: “I don’t want you guys to forget how important good company is and how important good support is. A lot of us will have friends, and you have to really cultivate a good support system around you. You have to acknowledge when persons are not supporting you and you have to have enough discernment to make sure that the persons who are around you are encouraging you to do the right thing.”

Insurance Corporation of Barbados Limited (ICBL) Assistant Manager, Felicia Bowen delivering her motivational presentation – 5 tips for success. (S. Forde-Craigg/BGIS)

The third tip was that they would have to work hard for their success, regardless of their environment.  She told them that they have to be accountable for their actions and for the path that they would be forging in life. 

“Time flies” was the fourth tip. She explained that “tomorrow is now”, so don’t put off anything for tomorrow because tomorrow is uncertain and “we literally do not have the next second promised”. 

“Never give up” was her fifth and final tip. “I want you guys to know that life is filled with hills and valleys; what I like to call growing pains and we all will experience it, but you have to literally never give up, that is what sets successful persons apart,” Ms, Bowen stated.

In her employer’s pitch, Mrs. Sherry also echoed the sentiment of never giving up, and shared how she became an entrepreneur.  She said in her first business trip to Puerto Rico to purchase clothing, she only had US$250 and that money had to pay for accommodation, transportation and food, and as a result, she was only able to purchase two outfits.

Ms. Sherry disclosed that was how Fashionation was started.  She said she began by selling clothing and accessories on a table in the ZR van stand, and today, along with her husband, they are the owners of two businesses, and will soon open a fourth location in August. 

When asked why she decided to be a part of the “Get Hired” programme, she stated: “I was faced with many, many challenges as it relates to getting help and getting encouragement, … and because of the road that I’ve travelled for us to get to where we are, we made a decision that it would be a fantastic opportunity to partner, not only to give employment, but to give encouragement, to give training, and anything that we can do to help our young people.”

Owner of Fashion Nation and Market Fresh, Joanne Sherry delivering her employer’s pitch. (S. Forde-Craigg/BGIS)

Ms. Sherry encouraged persons present to never give up on their dreams.

Two of the 16 participants shared how they felt about participating in the “Get Hired” event, they were 23-year-old Jenae Stuart and 21-year-old Terell Best. 

Miss Stuart, a third-year university student pursuing studies in psychology and management with an interest in working with children, stated: “It was very interesting. I found the speakers to be very motivational and informative.  They gave us some interview tips; they highlighted some things about the attitude and behaviours you should go into the interview with; how you should dress; how you should speak and how to represent yourself in everything you do, and to put your best foot forward.”

Mr. Best, who wants to work in the hospitality sector, revealed that the programme “was excellent”.  “I learned soft skills, interviewing skills, basically all about the world of work,” he said.  In addition, he shared that the programme helped to boost his confidence for the interview. 

Both Jenae and Terell said that they would recommend the “Get Hired” programme to their peers.  

To date, the Ministry has hosted 235 young persons at the “Get Hired” events. To participate in the “Get Hired” programme, persons aged 18 to 25 may call Senior Youth Commissioner, Elizabeth Bowen, at telephone number 535-3863, or may email their information to mysce.pti@barbados.gov.bb

They may also be referred by a Youth Commissioner, an agency or individual, or may visit the Ministry’s office, at Sky Mall, Haggatt Hall, St. Michael.

sheena.forde-craigg@barbados.gov.bb

Pin It on Pinterest