Minister of Youth and Community Empowerment, Adrian Forde. (FP)

The Ministry of Youth and Community Empowerment is set to launch an initiative that aims to take back the blocks across Barbados and transform them into exciting, viable community-driven small business centres.

According to Minister of Youth and Community Empowerment, Adrian Forde, this initiative is the first phase in his Ministry’s Building Blocks programme which will be rolled out on Friday, July 27 when he, along with officials from the Ministry, will visit ten ‘blocks’ in St. Michael and Christ Church.

In explaining the rationale behind the project, Acting Permanent Secretary in that Ministry, Betty Alleyne-Headley, described the Building Blocks Project as a “transformative and revolutionary community-based social intervention designed to address issues of unemployment, crime and violence.”

There are plans to provide on-going training for ‘block entrepreneurs’, facilitate smart partnerships for knowledge sharing, as well as marketing and accounting support services.

Come September 2018, the ‘block entrepreneurs’ will be supported by a cadre of professionals who will train them in a number of developmental areas that would allow them to manage their businesses, in an effort to transition from small to medium-sized enterprises over the three-year life-cycle of the project.

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