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Belize Social Investment Fund continues to provide Entrepreneur Skills Training to Belizeans in Rural Communities Print E-mail
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Thursday, 07 August 2014 00:00

BELMOPAN, Wednesday 6 August, 2014: Residents from San Jose and Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District, who have successfully completed a vocational training in sewing, will receive ‘Certificate of Completion’ during Graduation Exercise at the Orange Walk Technical High School campus, at 10 a.m. on Saturday 9 August, 2014.

The Government of Belize financed the 10-month sewing project for the 30 residents in the northern communities at a total cost of $51,440.00 through a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
The training of the residents in sewing was a component of the San Jose Multipurpose Center and Guinea Grass Multipurpose Center sub-projects implemented by the Social Investment Fund as part of its mandate to work in line with the Government’s poverty alleviation strategy.

Sewing was identified by the women’s groups as a skill since many of them buy custom-made school uniforms or sometimes travel to other communities in search of a seamstress. Acquiring this skill, will allow them to sew uniforms for their children and other families at a reasonable price, and in this regard, they can become self-sufficient. One notable feature is that the community of the twin villages of San Jose and San Pablo, and Guinea Grass village will benefit from these businesses and venture since these items have a market potential of a consumer population estimated at 5,000.

The successful achievers are comprised of women’s group who have been equipped, and empowered with relevant skills training and competencies that will enable them to collectively engage in income-generating activities as emerging entrepreneurs. The sewing equipment, which includes 4 industrial and 20 regulars, will remain at the respective Multipurpose Centers for future production and programs.
Small Business Training in the areas of Defining Entrepreneurship, Decision Making and Leadership, Market and Marketing, Business Opportunities, and Business Mentoring were also offered to participants. Both of these training initiatives formed the two capacity building components of the project. Recognizing the importance of community partnership and development, the women’s group plans to serve as trainers to residents in neighbouring communities as part of their development plan.

Besides the sewing of uniforms, the women’s group has identified the following sewing product lines that could allow them to produce household items such as decorative kitchen curtains, aprons, mittens, chef caps, chair covers, pillow cases, pin cushions, and Christmas ornaments among others. These hand and tailored made items will be displayed for sale at the Multipurpose Centers in the respective villages as well as at the ‘Banquitas House of Culture.’

Speakers at the official Graduation Exercise will include SIF’s Executive Director, Mr. Lamb, and Principal of Orange Walk Technical High School, Mr. William Polanco among others.