Minister for Youth Development and Sports Shawn Edward has announced the establishment of a Beckwith International Leadership Development Centre which will result in tremendous benefit to the young people of Saint Lucia.
BILD or Beckwith International Leadership Development is a programme administered by UK Sport, a subsidiary entity of the British government mandated with the responsibility for sport development.
It was during the 2012 Olympics that the government of Saint Lucia engaged the organisation and presented a successful bid to establish a BILD in Saint Lucia.
The Beckwith International Leadership Development Programme will provide resources and build relationships to establish a Leadership Training Institute that will use sport to touch the lives of young people.
“Research has shown that the majority of individuals who partake in sport, particularly in small island states like ours, have been able to use sport as an avenue or vehicle to move them from one stage in life to another. And so in collaboration with UK Sport we are saying that we can use sport as a mechanism to provide leadership training for our young people,” Edward said.
The minister expects this leadership training programme to impact over 10,000 youth across the island over the span of four years.
The Leadership Training Institute, the minister explained, will create a vibrant network of youth leaders who would volunteer during Saint Lucia’s hosting of the 2017 Commonwealth Youth Games.
“But the voluntarism will not stop there because we do not want a situation where Saint Lucia is only remembered as a good host of the Commonwealth Youth Games. The structures that we put in place have to be structures that can be synchronized with what already exist in the society, and we are hoping that partnership and bringing together will lead to a much more effective and efficient society,” he added.
Minister Edward believes the facilitation of young persons in overall nation building is critical to general youth development and the pursuance of excellence in Saint Lucia.
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