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Young heroes told: Don’t depend on corporate $$
Even though funding for causes are not as readily available as it used to be, Non Governmental Organisations should not allow corporate sponsoring to determine their development and growth. That advice came from President George Maxwell Richards in his address to staff and student members of the Heroes Foundation at the inauguration of students into the Youth Development Programme (YDP) and awards ceremony yesterday at the National Academy of Performing Arts, Port-of-Spain. Chairman of the foundation, Philip Julien, said the waiting list of schools interested in the programme continued to grow and hoped with increased and steady sponsorship it would be able to meet growing demands. In his address, President Richards told students the absence of traditional sponsorship should not stand in the way of growth and advised them to develop a skills bank and use fund-raising projects to help fund the programme.
He listed examples of fund-raising activities in which students could get involved, such as art sales, car washes, school plays and garage sales. He said ideas like the ones he highlighted held the added benefit of encouraging teams of business-minded young people to seek self-employment in the future. He also said the foundation should not remain a well-kept secret and hoped principals and students would advertise the programme to better attract sponsors. He described the global financial crisis as a catalyst for young people to become self-sufficient. Julien encouraged students to “think big” and take advantage of the programme which, he said, “minimised restrictions and maximised empowerment.”
Bishop’s Centenary student, Maria Lamy, gave a testimonial of the Heroes Foundation’s effect on the students at her school. She said with the aid of the foundation and Plastikeep, students were presented with the physical means to begin a recycling programme at her school. She said students now made jewelery and decorative items from the recycled material. “Because of this programme we developed an awareness of our surroundings and a greater sense of responsibility for the environment,” said Lamy. Seven schools from Port-of-Spain and environs were represented. They were Barataria North Secondary, Belmont Secondary, Bishop’s Centenary College, St Francois Girls’ College, Woodbrook Government Secondary, Diego Martin North Secondary and for the first time this year South East Port-of-Spain Secondary.
Students from each school were inducted into the programme of the Heroes Foundation.
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