Adult education, community in alliance to teach drop-outs
Canada donates furniture, equipment
Stabroek News
September 14, 2001

Youths of the Campbellville, Kitty, Newtown, Sophia and Prashad Nagar areas who dropped out of schools were yesterday given another chance when Adult Education Association (AEA) classes were formally opened at the Camptown Community Centre.

The centre, which was rehabilitated last year through the assistance of the Social Impact Amelioration Programme (SIMAP), will house some 95 youths who aim to attain their goals through the classes offered.

In addition, the youths would be further assisted through the donation yesterday of a computer, printer and furniture by the Canadian High Commission made possible by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).

The donation to the tune of Cdn$1.4 million comprised 120 student combination chairs and desks, blackboards, four filing cabinets, four office chairs, a computer and accessories and a photocopier. It is intended that the items provided will improve the capacity of the AEA to provide non-formal education and skills training for youths and adults.

Acting Canadian High Commissioner, Murray Kam, who made the donation, noted that one could not ignore the value of education to the development of Guyana, adding that the Canadian government supported such projects.

The AEA was established in 1957 and it seeks to provide through the non-formal system, education and training to Guyanese.

Giving a background to the partnership between the AEA and the communities, a representative of the community group in Campbellville, Junior Garnett, said after the building was rehabilitated in August 2000, they had decided that the main focus would have been on education.

However, the first stumbling block was the lack of furniture and trained resource personnel. He said that through a survey conducted in the areas they learnt that there was need for remedial classes. As a result they approached the AEA and commenced discussions. They were asked to prepare a proposal for funding and submit it to CIDA.

Executive Director of AEA, Newton Profitt, urged the youths to try to grow into educated and skilled adults regardless of their environment. He reminded them that they had to make up for the time lost and in preparing them for the work ahead, he told them, they would be given a lot of homework.

Advisor to the Minister of Education, Hector Patterson, who stood in for the minister, Dr Henry Jeffrey said that there was no greater alliance than students, parents and the community as was happening in the area. He told the youths that they had the responsibility of building themselves to meet the challenges of life. He said that it was important for them to finish what they had started so that they could make a contribution to their families and country.