Residents of La Brea, Egypt Village, Vessigny, Point Fortin and environs are all invited to the Egypt Indoor Facility tomorrow, September 20, as the Community Outreach and Impact Caravan, which is being hosted by the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services, moves into the Point Fortin community from 10 am.
Since it was launched on August 30, at the Palo Seco Community Centre, the offerings of this Community Caravan continues to increase, as more and more stakeholders are coming on board to provide information and offer Government services to persons within various communities.
The Caravan stopped at the Naparima College last Saturday and was well patronised as hundreds visited the venue to access government services which included, among other things, opportunities for job placement, training and retraining opportunities, financial management, applications for minor house repairs and electrification; as well as temporary food support and free health and counselling services.
The Community Outreach and Impact Caravan allows for a one-stop mechanism where government services are combined at one location, bringing access to and information on such services, at the doorsteps of many citizens who would normally have to commute to various locations for same.
Under the theme Building Resilience to Secure our Nation, the initiative seeks to offer coping strategies and well as advice on how persons could improve their living conditions and circumstances, despite challenges to everyday living and try to “make ends meet” by re-inventing themselves and making simple adjustments.
The approach involves exposing citizens to several training and retraining opportunities where they can become employable, either through new skills development or through entrepreneurial development and/or the expansion of an existing small business.
In particular, the SEED grant which is provided by the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services provides financial assistance to persons in difficult social and economic circumstances to establish a small business. Qualifying applicants can access up to a maximum of $15,000 for this purpose.
Among some of the key stakeholders of the Caravan, include the Ministry of Labour and Small Enterprise Development where Nedco, the OJT programme and the National Employment Register are all available for persons to register for new opportunities.
The Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs is also on board with programmes and opportunities for vulnerable youths; while the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development has partnered to provide information on housing and land settlement issues.
Through the Ministry of Education, MIC Institute of Technology, the National Training Agency and YTEPP Ltd are on hand to provide information on free training and retraining opportunities that are now available; while the Ministry of Health through the RHA is providing free blood sugar, blood pressure and BMI Testing.
There is also counselling available on site from the National Family Services Division of the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services and the Division of Gender and Child Affairs, under the Office of the Prime Minister.
Several non-governmental organisations, like ALTA, Red Cross, Support Autism TT and the T&T Association for the Hearing Impaired are also part of the Caravan.
Tomorrow, people are encouraged to walk with their National Identification Card and Birth Certificate to access services.
Interested individuals may visit the website for the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services for further details and to find out when the Caravan will be coming to your community, at www.social.gov.tt