‘Project Hope’ to Assist Soufriere Youth

By Reginald Andrew

MEMBER of Parliament (MP) for Soufriere, Emma Hippolyte disclosed that the authorities are keen on implementing a programme entitled “Project Hope” to cater for the welfare and socio-economic needs of young people from the community.

Hippolyte explained that she met with the young men who were committed on building their careers in varying fields of work. She said at least 22 young men were interested in marine life and expressed their desire to become “boat captains”.

The Soufriere MP stated that she had recently funded a programme in that field, and will now assist the youngsters in pursuit of their chosen  career paths.

“Some of them want to actually start their own businesses …and we will assist them by helping them to apply to the Youth Economy Grant to get the funding needed,” she told reporters, at a recent media brief.

The Commerce Minister said the project will cater for at least 50 young men and 50 young women from the wider Soufriere community; while there are other programmes such as the MSMEs and Youth Economy Agency ( YEA), which caters for the populace, zisland wide.

Hippolyte said, the “doors of the Soufriere Constituency Office” are always open to assist the young people in pursuing their goals.

Meanwhile, the Soufriere Constituency Office recently collaborated with several groups from the community to undertake a thorough cleanup campaign. According to MP Hippolyte, the exercise was undertaken as part of Creole Heritage Month to create – a Legacy Programme.

The activity took the form of a ‘Koudmein Soufriere’ exercise with a minimum of 12 communities participating. Various sections of the community were covered including, the cemetery and the Bouton gap.

“There were two projects; one involved beautifying the Bouton Gap, as well as ensuring that barricades were put up in areas that were very dangerous and risky,” Hippolyte explained. “We went into Fond St Jacques and in the Moca Housing area, where we cleaned up that place. We also went into the Fond St Jacques Health Centre, where the workers came in and (persons from) the community came in, and the Centre was cleaned up.”

The MP added that the workload stretched into the New Development area, Palmiste, and Sulphur Springs communities and “persons from the community came out…coming together and working together to clean.”

She said some of the hotels within the zone also took part in the cleanup activity, including Sugar Beach “and they decided to clean by the World Heritage Site”, while Anse Chastanet worked in the Lenny’s Hill project, and Stonefield Resorts took on the Bouton Viewpoint.

Other work projects involved residents from Belfond, who undertook some road work repairs. Members of the Seventh Day Academy (SDA) church also took part in the cleanup activity “and taking over the Soufriere Bus Stop …pressure washing and painting”.

MP Hippolyte asserted: “So, I am extremely pleased at our first attempt at Koudmein Soufriere. We believe it is an event that we will be having every year … to bring our community together and to bring back the spirit of Koudmein itself.”

The parliamentary representative spoke about the latest action undertaken by the SCO in collaboration with the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASCO) to supply pipe-borne water to the residents of Columbette, in an effort to address the water issue at Palmiste.

Lately, blue plastic pipes can be seen running across the lower section of the hilly ridges as part of the project aimed at supplying water to these areas.

“It is an issue for us, and in terms of water quality,  it is a national project,” she said. “When you speak to the issue of sustainable development, water quality is high up on the agenda and we are dealing with it, both for potable water and sea water.”

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