The Barbados Trust Fund Limited is partnering with the Small Business Association (SBA) and the Barbados National Standards Institution (BNSI) to offer expanded training opportunities for its clients.
Business Development Manager at Barbados Trust Fund Limited, Kirk Dottin, made the announcement while encouraging new and existing clients to register with entities during the disbursement of funds at the end of four days of training at the Bush Hall Resource Centre, recently.
He said the Trust Fund had recently developed a relationship with the SBA to expand the company’s training programme, and added: “We are encouraging all of our members to join the SBA because they do a lot of extra training that we may not be able to afford. So, we have developed a relationship with them where all of our new clients are required to register with the SBA to benefit from this training.”
Regarding the BNSI partnership, Mr. Dottin said initially, the relationship was only for businesses engaged in manufacturing, but with the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trust was in a position to provide technical assistance with packaging and labelling by joining with the BNSI.
“It is a graduation exercise. Once we get persons to export readiness, we would then transfer you to the BIDC (Barbados Investment and Development Corporation) and Caribbean Export, who would then do the further promotion because at the Trust Loan Fund, we do not have the expertise for that. So, in terms of working with small business development, we are partnering with similar agencies to provide additional business development services for our clients,” he stated.
Mr. Dottin added that the company’s vision is to take its community-based training throughout the island, and is optimistic of having another training session before year-end.
Meanwhile, Junior Reid of Dymond Auto Tours Transport, who was involved in public transportation for more than 12 years, said the funds would be used to put his vehicle on the road, as part of the Transport Board’s TAP Programme.
He described his move to the programme was to enable him to operate under a better standard.
“I think that I should grow from here because I have tried on the other side for a while and to me yes it was successful, but not the way I wanted it to be. I did a lot of work with the schools, for the University of the West Indies… and it has been very good. I like to work with the schools because I get to reach out to school boys and give them a lecture as to how they should behave while travelling in the vehicle. I appreciate all that the Trust Fund has done.”
Shane Knight, of Fresh Farm Foods, said he plans to expand his animal rearing business, which began in February this year. He is also part of the Ministry of Agriculture’s FEED Programme, and said the funds would help him tremendously.
“The Trust Loan will help me a lot because I would now be able to go a little further with my business, and it would give me that cushion where I would not have to be under tremendous stress because of COVID-19, so it would give me that break to do a little better,” he said.
Mr. Knight said although the COVID-19 pandemic had impacted his business, he was able to reap crops in time for the “market boom” during the early stages of the pandemic, when there were limited imports to the island.