Hinterland communities benefit from PYCI

Guyana Chronicle
April 24, 2003

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THE Presidentís Youth Choice Initiative (PYCI) Programme is a scheme that provides meaningful opportunities for youths countrywide, and was designed to operate through projects identified by young people that were considered important to their development.

The projects which saw the construction of community centres, computer centres and gyms, have not only benefited the young who saw it as a means for personal development, but a number of adults in the beneficiary communities also share the view.

Some communities have also received agricultural equipment, boat engines and boats.

Hinterland areas, including Waramadong, Parima, Chinaweing and Arakaka and Yarribo and Three Friends Mines in the Region Ten (Upper Demerara/Berbice), have all benefited from the PYCI project.

The benefits to date are, Waramadong a $600,000 generator; Parima some $100,000 in agricultural equipment and Chinaweing $50,000 in sports gear. Yarribo and Three Friends received a woodworking workshop and a community centre, to the tune of approximately $3M and $2.6M respectively, while Arakaka received sports gear and equipment.

In some areas, a small cost applies which is used to help defray the costs for maintenance of the buildings and equipment, while in others a membership fee of $500 is charged for use of the community centres and computer centers.

Other costs are intended to cover printing and other services available, such as the offering of computer classes at some computer centres at a reduced rate.

There is also the provision of services that are otherwise unavailable in a number of communities, one example being the woodworking workshop at Three Friends Mines. Employment and skills training opportunities are rare in this area, and through the woodworking shop, the circumstances for some persons in that community have already been positively changed.

The same can also be said of the board mill at Jawalla.

These PYCI programmes have also incorporated the efforts of the Private Sector and Regional Administration bodies, to manage activities surrounding the facilities made available.

To this end, private companies are assisting the projects by providing electricity, help with fund-raising ventures and, provide transportation and other needs.

The Regional Administration Offices of the respective communities are responsible for establishing youth standing committees to help manage the projects, while the Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs) and the Regional Democratic Councils (RDCs) function as the oversight body to the projects. (GOVERNMENT INFORMATION AGENCY - GINA).

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