Sports on their minds: Minister of Sports, Stephen Lashley, greeting Ambassador Ryan Brathwaite at the start of today’s meeting. (A. Miller/BGIS)

Barbados may soon be hosting the Ryan Brathwaite Invitational Meet.

This disclosure came today from Minister of Sports, Stephen Lashley, following a meeting with Ambassador Ryan Brathwaite at his office at Mall Internationale, Haggatt Hall, St. Michael.

Mr. Lashley said his Ministry was keen on exploring opportunities for the further development of athletics in Barbados. He continued: "The intention is to move very quickly towards setting up a coordinating committee to start planning this event…

"We need to mobilise Barbados from now towards the Olympics, which are due in 2016 in Rio, Brazil. Therefore, the move to have a special Ryan Brathwaite Invitational event is part and parcel of that national preparation, which has been embraced by the Ministry as being a very critical component of the wider programme of having the country focus on Team Barbados from now."

The Minister further disclosed that a Ryan Brathwaite Mentorship Programme would be implemented shortly. "I have already asked the relevant officers in the Ministry to look at a structure for that programme, which Ryan is very keen on starting, in collaboration with the Ministry of Family, Culture, Sports and Youth.

"The mentorship programme will be for our young people in Barbados, and it is intended to not only cover schools, but young people in the community who can benefit from the very strong focus that Ryan has in terms of his own personal development…," he explained.

Mr. Lashley described today’s talks as "very fruitful", adding that he updated Ambassador Brathwaite on the progress of the new track at the National Stadium as well as the one bearing his name at the University of the West Indies.

They also discussed the Caribbean Games, with the Minister stating that earlier this week at the Council for Human and Social Development on Sport meeting in Guyana, his CARICOM colleagues agreed to establish a working group to look at the possibility of having the games. That group is expected to report to the ministers within a short period of time.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Brathwaite is keen to work with his homeland. He said his training was going well and promised that 2013 would be a good year for him.????


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