Basseterre, St. Kitts, February 12, 2020 (SKNIS): In 2019, some 150 members of the Volunteer Corps were seen supporting many activities across St. Kitts and Nevis. They ranged from assisting the elderly and differently-abled to conducting beach and seabed clean-ups, planting trees and hosting educational training sessions.
The positive actions were highlighted by the Honourable Shawn Richards, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Youth, during the launching ceremony and orientation session for the newest members of the Volunteer Corps. The event was held on Wednesday, February 12, 2020, at the Old Boy’s School.
“This morning I am filled with pride, bubbling over with joy and feeling incredibly hopeful about the future of St. Kitts and Nevis,” Honourable Richards stated, noting that there are now some 175 young people who stand to benefit from the community service-oriented programme.
The deputy prime minister cited the famous quote by the late United States President John F. Kennedy who said, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
He said that this quote, “Reminds us that we cannot always stand aside and expect that the state should and someday would come to address every single issue observable to us. It reminds us that it is indeed within our power and among our responsibilities as citizens to act and do what we can do to realize the improvement of our country.”
The young people, most of whom are students of the C. F. Bryant College enrolled in the Supporting Advancement of Further Education (SAFE) programme, were advised of the benefits of giving back to society.
“The act of selflessly serving others often yields an array of other benefits including, but far from limited to, the expansion of one’s network, the establishment of lifelong friends and colleagues, the development of valuable and marketable experiences and skills, and even the acquisition of a permanent job position,” Deputy Prime Minister Richards stated.
He added, “While these are not guaranteed for every volunteer, it is important to note that you should apply yourself and strive for excellence in service. You can open significant opportunities for yourself and for your future.”
As such, the students were reminded to reflect a positive attitude when engaging in their four hours of volunteer service per month.
“Gain as much experience as you can and continue along that part in life, for then you would be on your way to an enriched and prosperous life experience,” Deputy Prime Minister Richards urged the new members of the Volunteer Corps.