The Government of Guyana and Japan today signed three grants totalling US$270,510 for local organisations embarking on development projects, benefitting over 2,000 in Regions Six and Nine.
The St. Francis Community Developers, Special Needs for Life Inc. and Iwokrama International Centre for Rain Forest were beneficiaries of grants under the Japan Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects.
These will see the construction of a skills training resource centre at Corentyne-Berbice at a cost of US$90,797; a US$89,813 multi-purpose centre in Kuma village in Central Rupununi and a medical service centre at Iwokrama International Centre for Rain Forest, for US$89, 900.
During the simple ceremony at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs, Sydney Allicock acknowledged the long-standing relations between Guyana and Japan. He described the funding as timely, even as the administration is working develop the country’s human capital.
“It is timely because I see this as an approach to spreading across the country the building of the capacity in those areas. As we speak, as we prepare to sign this agreement is one that we welcome very much because we have a team of persons, especially the young ones to be prepared for the eventual takeoff,” Minister Allicock said.
The Minister said that Guyana is now seen as the gateway to South America and there are many expectations. Therefore, he said partnerships such as these are very important for the further development of the country.
He said that the agreement is one that is welcomed at this time when Guyana is poised to see major development emerging for the new and emerging oil and gas industry. He commended the organisations for visualizing and executing such project to enhance the livelihood of the people within their communities.
Executive Director for Economic Cooperation and Global Trade Investment within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Rawle Lucas explained that Guyana has been one of the main recipients of Japanese assistance in the English-speaking Caribbean through such programs as the grant assistance grassroots human security project; non-project grant aid, technical training, and capacity building, senior volunteer programs and the use of Japanese expertise in several other areas.
These projects, Lucas said, have the purpose of providing a critical solution to some of the social and economic deficiencies that could be found in many of our communities.
While expressing gratitude to the Government of Japan, Lucas said “Guyana’s economic progress through our cooperation represents a shining example of the virtues of the long-standing friendship. It remains Guyana’s hope that this shared experience will further encourage closer ties between our two countries. May relation between Guyana and Japan continue to grow and may this growth continue to be of mutual benefit to the peoples of both countries.”
Japan’s Deputy Head of Mission, Yoshinori Yakabe, said that the country is pleased to support the organizations and their endeavours, to provide educational and social services to Guyanese. “These three organizations will be better equipped to address the human security needs that exist within their respective communities…the very purpose of which the GGP scheme was created.”