In this time of economic struggles, MSME’s face similar financial challenges and are forced to cut back on staff, production and services. On the other hand, NGO’s and CBO’s faces just the same challenges because they depend solely on donation/sponsorship. Based on research done by The Conrad Guthrie Foundation, it is revealed that youth oriented (CBO’s) are experiencing challenges in management, membership, personal and academic development, as well as cash flow for administrative activities. Our training programme “The Incubator” is uniquely and strategically designed to address these challenges and thus providing a simple but yet effective concept that will develop and promote the operation of any such group.
CGF began in 2009 after realizing that community youth groups are having major challenges in many aspects such as, project planning and implementation, roles and responsibilities of executive members, team leadership and management. There is also the need for business networking, community engagement and youth empowerment through wholesome youth engagement activities. These issues affect majority of local community based organizations –CBO’s. One of the most dominant youth groups today is under the umbrella of the Jamaica Constabulary Force which covers well over 100 communities across Jamaica, The Police Youth Club (PYC). In addition to this network of active youth, the churches play a vital role by steering individuals to God by means of scriptural values and principles; however, there is still an issue with management and community youth outreach. There are other groups that are under the umbrella of a number of institutions such as Primary Schools, High Schools and Colleges.
By means of this effort, we identify, we train and we present to communities, more effective and qualified game changers. This training will allow youth groups to identify and implement more meaningful projects that can create employment and income sustainability for their communities and the Jamaican society at large.
“The Incubator” is the answer to most of the pressing challenging that youth groups are facing today. We have been to their communities, and have seen the strength and weakness of the group, and the community’s amenities. Over the past four years, Conrad Guthrie identified a greater need for this type of training.
to train two thousand, two hundred and fifty (2,250) persons across Jamaica. four (4) communities per parish, forty (40) persons per group.
A reformed group…
We are working with community members to organize a core team of persons who will utilize the skills and knowledge gained through training to think more outside of the box in order to implement more meaningful community based projects that are aiming to create impact, growth and profitability.
This will cost the foundation about Two Million Seven Hundred and Thirty Eight Thousand Dollars ($2,738,000.00) over a one year period. When evaluating our project, it is important that we make the evaluation complete and honest by engaging in an information gathering process through which questionnaire charts are completed in order to evaluate each training sessions. We then conduct a review to ensure that the results are excellent and are accurately and carefully documented. We also conduct online surveys, social media discussions and one-on-one phone calls. By reaching this target number of 2,250 persons we will have an indicator of accomplishment. We will have an established partnership with government agencies, NGO’ and CBO’s that will support the operation of this project.
A – Achievable
A simple, low cost and easy to use concept that can be applied in any environment in order to achieve success. This project is developed by a core team of specially selected volunteers with the necessary attitudes, abilities, skills.
R – Reliable
This project is youth oriented, it is developed with the aim to educate and equip community members around the Island. It allows them to have a more meaningful and active role in their communities, and to have a sense of purpose because of the responsibilities that they will have to adapt. Their work will be more organized, and will be executed on a professional basis which does not require major funding. The training provides a set of information tools that make community impact project much easier for implementation.
Is this worthwhile?
While inaccuracy, lack of professionalism, lack of team work, consistency, project sustainability and social and business networking pose significant threat to many CBO’s across the Island, transformation is possible. Anticipating solution is becoming overwhelming, and therefore these groups fail in many areas. One such area is hemorrhage of membership, which results in total inactivity. Worst case scenario is inactivity which many groups fear. While we may not be the hero to transform all the target groups, we believe that a comprehensive education and engagement programme can decrease the major challenges. Groups will be more equipped, be more aware, competent, professional and committed to team work in order to achieve success and impact.
T – Timely
Sales and Marketing, promotion and sustainability at this time is essential as the core objective is to build trust and relationship with the local community and business partners.
Is this the right time?
Economy – overview 2000: Based on an Online Article: Updated on January 31, 2014:
The Jamaican economy is heavily dependent on services, which accounted for more than 60% of GDP at the end of 2011. The country continues to derive most of its foreign exchange from tourism, remittances, and bauxite/alumina. Remittances account for nearly 15% of GDP and exports of bauxite and alumina make up roughly 5%. The bauxite/alumina sector was most affected by the global downturn while the tourism industry was resilient.Tourism revenues account for roughly 5% of GDP in 2011. Jamaica’s economy faces many challenges to growth: high crime and corruption, large-scale unemployment and underemployment, and a debt-to-GDP ratio of nearly 130%. Jamaica’s onerous public debt burden is the result of government bailouts to ailing sectors of the economy, most notably to the financial sector. In early 2010, the Jamaican Government created the Jamaica Debt Exchange in order to retire high-priced domestic bonds and significantly reduce annual debt servicing. Despite the improvement, debt servicing costs still hinder the government’s ability to spend on infrastructure and social programs, particularly as job losses rise in a shrinking economy. Jamaica was hard hit by the effects of the global economic crisis, experiencing economic contractions from 2008-10 and growth remains low.The SIMPSON-MILLER administration faces the difficult prospect of having to achieve fiscal discipline in order to maintain debt payments, while simultaneously attacking a serious crime problem that is hampering economic growth. High unemployment exacerbates the crime problem, including gang violence that is fueled by the drug trade. As of late 2012, the SIMPSON-MILLER government was working to negotiate a new IMF Stand-by agreement to gain access to additional funds.
While the government is faced with its own challenges, we believe that if we all come together as one, we can help community youth groups to implement income generating projects which they (may) benefit from on a personal basis.
SELECTION & TRAINING
We select random groups based on their challenges at the community level. Conduct 6-weeks of training beginning with Sales and Customer Service under the theme “Using your Community to Increase Growth and Profitability”. The main topics for training are as follows:
Week One – Module 1: Sales and Customer Service – Making Money/Brand Quality
Week Two – Module 2: Project Planning and Implementation – Impact
Week Three – Module 3: Roles and Responsibility of Executive Members – Team Work
Week Four – Module 4: Social and Business Networking – Professional Influence
Week Five – Community Assessment/Project Survey
Week Six- Information is Analyzed and a project is identified or developed based on pre-planned activities
At the end of each training session, everyone will receive an individual certificate of participation; however, the group will receive one certificate to indicate that it has completed and have graduated from the training programme. In addition to completing this programme, the group must identify a project that will empower and impact the positively impact the community.
The group is entitled to contributing only 15% of overall profit to The Conrad Guthrie Foundation once it has generated more than JMD$15,000.00. To achieve this, the group must be committed and must utilize the skills learned during and information tools provided during training. In order to complete training assessment, we will be present at all planning meetings to ensure that this project is adequately planned and implemented. Working with young people is integral to our approach to sustainable and innovative development.