JICA/JOCV Saint Lu­cia pay re­spects to Her Ex­cel­lency

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Her Ex­cel­lency Dame Pear­lette Louisy hosted six vol­un­teers and three mem­bers of staff of Ja­pan In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Agency/Ja­pan Over­seas Co­op­er­a­tion Vol­un­teers (JICA/JOCV ) Saint Lu­cia on Thurs­day 4th De­cem­ber, 2014.

The meet­ing was an aus­pi­cious event for the agency, which is now re­spon­si­ble for JOCV vol­un­teer ac­tiv­i­ties in Saint Lu­cia, Do­minica and St. Vincent and the Gre­nadines. Fur­ther­more, this year is des­ig­nated as Ja­pan/CARICOM Friend­ship Year 2014. Next year 2015 will be the twen­ti­eth an­niver­sary of the com­mence­ment of JOCV ac­tiv­i­ties in Saint Lu­cia.

Mr. Ike Tet­suhiro, Res­i­dent Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of JICA/JOCV Saint Lu­cia, in­formed Her Ex­cel­lency of the Agency’s ca­pac­ity of Grant Aid and co-op­er­a­tion with cur­rent pri­or­ity ar­eas of as­sis­tance for Saint Lu­cia as well as vol­un­teer ac­tiv­i­ties.

All of the vol­un­teers now serv­ing are based in largely youth re­lated ac­tiv­i­ties. Although the majority ar­rived in Oc­to­ber, at least two vol­un­teers have been work­ing for the past three months do­ing youth ac­tiv­i­ties in the Up­ton Gar­dens Girls Cen­tre and at the St. Lu­cia Red Cross. The re­main­ing four vol­un­teers are lend­ing their ex­per­tise to the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion in the dis­tricts of Gros Islet and Choiseul, where two vol­un­teers teach mu­sic to pri­mary and sec­ondary school stu­dents.

Two more vol­un­teers are in­volved in Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment ac­tiv­i­ties at the re­quest of the Min­istry of So­cial Trans­for­ma­tion and the Saint Lu­cia Blind Wel­fare As­so­ci­a­tion.

Ed­u­ca­tion and so­cial wel­fare were ev­i­dently top­ics near to Her Ex­cel­lency’s heart, and she ques­tioned the vol­un­teers and gave sound ad­vice on how they could im­prove their pro­grammes to have max­i­mum im­pact.

The vol­un­teers en­joyed chat­ting with Her Ex­cel­lency who was a gra­cious and charm­ing host. The aim of the JICA/JOCV Saint Lu­cia of­fice is to pro­vide Ja­panese bi-lat­eral as­sis­tance un­der Ja­pan’s Of­fi­cial De­vel­op­ment As­sis­tance in the form of Tech­ni­cal Co­op­er­a­tion, Grant Aid and loan as­sis­tance to fur­ther the de­vel­op­ment goals of the host coun­tries. The year 2014 is des­ig­nated Ja­pan/CARICOM Friend­ship Year, in which Ja­pan and CARICOM coun­tries en­hance their re­la­tion­ship in di­verse fields such as cul­ture, trade and tourism. Through­out 2014, com­mem­o­ra­tive events have been held in Ja­pan and CARICOM mem­ber states.

Vol­un­teers with Gov­er­nor Gen­eral Dame

Pear­lette Louisy.

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