One hundred and forty-three youth are now proud graduates of the A Ganar program, having received certificates of employability in a ceremony last Saturday evening at the Hilton Barbados Resort.

Minister of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Ronald Jones, addressed the graduation that was attended by officials from his Ministry, the Inter-American Development Bank, A Ganar, Partners of America, educators and parents.

Calling it an occasion ???where we get to celebrate our young people, their perseverance and their success???, Mr. Jones said the occasion also gave leaders and education officials the ability to ???stop, take a deep breath, take a step back and reflect???, knowing that the programmes carefully selected to benefit young people had set them on the right path.

Students heard that it was a path to continue on despite the constant challenges and were told that those who were weak quit, while those who were strong, purposeful and determined stayed the course.

The Education Minister deemed the graduates talented, and urged adults to give them a chance, and to try to understand and resolve the difficulties that may confront them.

Stressing this had to be done in schools and tertiary level institutions, he emphasised the role of the home, saying: ???Go and seek whatever help is necessary to help you to manage what can sometimes be a turbulent period of their lives.???

The A Ganar program was commended for proving to be a ???win-win??? situation for Barbados, and Mr. Jones said it was carefully chosen to equip youth with the technical and practical skills needed to meet today???s demands.

???The A Ganar Program helps young people transfer lessons from field and classroom sports-based activities into market driven skills and attitudes. Its success can be measured in the 77 participants that have already graduated, and now 143 of you that will be joining the A Ganar Alumni,??? he pointed out.

The former teacher added that A Ganar???s success was not only expressed by participants but also by the Program???s internship partners, such as Hilton Barbados Resort. Other facilitators and business houses also came in for praise, and Mr. Jones called for more to come on board.

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