Floral Course Graduands Go Public.
THE National Insurance Corporation parking facility on the waterfront was a hive of activity when a group of determined students who recently graduated from the National Enrichment and Learning Unit (NELU) came together to showcase their work to the public and to take a bold step in opening their own businesses.
On show were a number of items one will need when planning for a wedding from flower arrangements to albums, picture frames and head pieces. Certainly the statement is clear: there is no need to travel or order from the outside. All made in St .Lucia with a touch of excellence.
The VOICE spoke to Hedda King – Edmunds, facilitator of the floral basic and intermediate courses, attached to the Ministry of Education / National Enrichment and Learning Unit about the mini trade exhibition staged by the granduands of the NELU programme from the Castries Comprehensive School’s Technical Division Cluster.
Said King – Edmunds: “We have some exhibits from the floral course. The students are marketing themselves. They are on the verge of starting a small business of their own and out of the 16 business areas offered by NELU they have chosen weddings as their No.1 love”.
About the exhibits, she said: “There is always room for improvement, but the students have all done a wonderful job. It is remarkable and bearing in mind they used a lot of recycled material to put all of this wonderful setting together”.
Asked what advice she had for a young lady who is presently out of school and in search of employment: King-Edmund said: “The sky is the limit; we all have our respective skills, so I am advising all young individuals on the outside who are self employed and those currently unemployed, to start a small business for themselves and to earn an income.”
The programme comprised Cake Making/Decorating (Basic/Intermediate), Electrical Installation (Basic/Intermediate), Garment Construction (Basic/Intermediate), Information Technology (Basic/Intermediate), Home/Backyard Gardening (Basic/Intermediate), Pastry (Basic/Intermediate), The Art of House Keeping, Tiling, Elder Care, Child Care, Human Relations, Plumbing and Flower Arranging.
Classes at the various centres around the island resume in September. The courses offered are reasonably-priced between EC$120.00 and- $180.00.
The VOICE also spoke to two students Cecilia Louison said: “We are showcasing our items and talent to the St. Lucian public. It took us a combined six months. In all we did the basic and intermediate course to be where we are today”.
Asked whether there were plans to seek a market to sell the items, Louison replied: “We are teaming up under one umbrella to make it happen with determination and perseverance”.
Samantha Herman, another student said, “I deal mainly with weddings, coordinating and decorating. Most of the products you see on display are products we have done out of basic home made materials which could be used at any wedding. Weddings these days are very expensive and if you’re a bride and your budget does not cut it you can do something simple. This is exactly what we have done You can minimize on the amount of money you spend for your entire wedding”.