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Suriname supports the strengthening of existing bonds of cooperation between Commonwealth Youth Programme and CARICOM

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President to pursue matter with Heads of Government and the CARICOM Secretariat

The Commonwealth Youth Programme Caribbean Centre (CYPCC) has again lauded the decision of the Heads of Government of CARICOM at their 27th Regular Meeting in St Kitts and Nevis last July to establish a Regional Commission on Youth Development.

The Commission on Youth Development was set up by the CARICOM Heads of Government to investigate and address the challenges faced by young people within the region.

Mr. Henry Charles, at left, is greeted by His Excellency President Ronald Venetiaan.

Mr. Henry Charles, at left, is greeted by His Excellency President Ronald Venetiaan.

At a meeting on Monday October 16 with His Excellency, Runaldo Ronald Venetiaan, President of the Republic of Suriname, who has lead responsibility for Youth Development in CARICOM, Mr Henry Charles, Regional Director of the Commonwealth Youth Programme Caribbean Centre, expressed support for the initiative and confirmed CYPCC’s willingness to participate in the process.

Mr Charles’ visit was prompted by a need to formalize CYPCC’s support for the youth commission initiative and to become more acquainted with some of the best practices being undertaken by the Government of Suriname as part of what has been described as a very progressive youth development strategy

During the meeting in Parimaribo, Suriname, the parties discussed the need for further strengthening of bonds between CYPCC and CARICOM in furtherance of the regional youth development agenda.

President Venetiaan expressed gratitude to CYPCC for its support in youth development in the region and pledged to convey to the Heads of Government and the CARICOM Secretariat CYPCC’s desire and willingness to strengthen existing bonds of cooperation as well as its commitment to forging a more progressive regional youth development agenda.

Commenting on the meeting, Mr Charles said, “The visit was very fruitful. It is part of CYPCC’s outreach strategy aimed at deepening the awareness of the quality of work we have been doing with regard to the regional youth development agenda over the last 30 years.”

The meeting with the President was historic because whereas there are existing bonds of cooperation between the CARICOM Secretariat and CYPCC, it was the first time that CYPCC was meeting formally with the Head of Government with lead responsibility for youth to discuss strategies to strengthening bonds of cooperation.”

The meeting has also laid the foundation for the building and strengthening of strategic alliances between CYPCC, the United Nations agencies operating in the Caribbean and other regional development agencies such as the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), to help build a more progressive regional youth development agenda.

The parties also agreed to continue exchanging ideas on the professionalisation of youth work and on best practices on youth enterprise and sustainable livelihoods.

Meanwhile, officials from Suriname’s Ministry of Youth mooted the idea of hosting a collaborative youth festival/exchange which will help promote youth creativity and facilitate the strengthening of the regional integration process.

The meeting was also attended by Suriname’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Education, Youth and Community Development, Director of Youth Affairs and the CARICOM Youth Ambassador.

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