200 youths begin training in government agri programme

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Government officials with some of the agri-business trainees at Government Campus Plaza, Port of Spain on February 23. Photo courtesy Information Division

The first 200 people in the Youth Agricultural Homestead Programme (YAHP) began training on Thursday.

The orientation was done by the Ministry of Youth Development and National Service at the Government Plaza, Port of Spain.

YAHP is a two-year training programme that gives young people between 18-35 an opportunity to become agribusiness entrepreneurs.

The ministry said in a release that the part-time programme offers participants, who are either employed or self-employed, the opportunity to learn agricultural best practices. The classes will be held virtually during the week and in-person on weekends.

Participants will undergo comprehensive training in crop production and animal husbandry in the first year. On completion, successful trainees will get access to land, technical and financial support, to prepare for the second year of training.

In the second year, trainees will get practical training on the land assigned to them.

Minister in the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries Avinash Singh spoke on behalf of Minister of Youth Develpment and National Service Minister Foster Cummings.

Singh said, “Our goal is to create a cadre of 21st century agri-entrepreneurs, in a sector that specially requires your contribution for our country’s sustainable development future. It is critical for us to boost as well as to sustain the national agricultural sector. This has significant implications for each and every one of us.”

Full-time student representative of YAHP Jazthia Edwards said, “This programme provides exposure to different farming operations, systems and agribusinesses which broadened and refined our outlook on agriculture.”

Also in attendance were Gachelle Gilkes-Edwards, programme co-ordinator, the ministry’s permanent secretary Farook Hosein, Haimdath Ramoutar, deputy permanent secretary of the Ministry of Youth Development and National Service and professor Clement Imbert, chairman of the University of TT.