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Georgetown, Guyana – (April 26, 2017) First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger, today, said that it is important for women to recognise and value their contributions to society, in her address at the opening ceremony of the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI), women’s conference, which is being held at the Georgetown Club.

The First Lady, delivered brief remarks and alluded to the fact women in leadership roles, play a vital role in moulding society and it is important that they understand the task given to them as leaders.

“I always tell women that they must recongnise and admire the qualities [that] they have in themselves, even though it might not be heralded or commended … They are economists, counsellors, and they are also good at other practical things…” Mrs. Granger said.

Mrs. Granger noted that although women continue to speak less of what they do in the homes, they continue to be the family’s backbone. She encouraged the women to make good use of the skills which they possess. “We must not be embarrassed to ask for fees for the things we do… very often women feel that the things they do they must not [add a price to it],” Mrs. Granger said.

First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger gestures while a making her point in response to a question posed to her during the interactive segment of the YLAI Women’s Conference.

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First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger and United States Ambassador to Guyana, Mr. Perry Holloway, during the opening ceremony of the YLAI women’s conference.

Meanwhile, United States Ambassador to Guyana, Mr. Perry Holloway, in his remarks encouraged the women to become leaders of tomorrow’s generation for the advancement of their nation.

“Guyana’s at the crossroads of transforming from being one of the poorest nations on the western hemisphere to one of the wealthiest. It will take great leaders, men and women to help Guyana navigate through and address the challenges of the future. Women are a vibrant force in business, civil society, government and every place else as you work to advance social and economic causes and safeguard human rights. Women’s participation and investing in young people are keys areas that are essential to building stronger, more prosperous and a more inclusive country. It is a simple fact that no country can fully develop if half of its citizens are left behind. Progress for women and progress for the country go hand in hand,” he said.

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Ms. Abbigale Loncke, Chief Executive Officer of Community Health Care delivering her address at the conference

The Ambassador also praised the 2016 recipient of the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative Award, Ms. Abbigale Loncke, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Community Health Care whom he noted , is an inspiration to young leaders of Guyana. Ms. Loncke represented Guyana at the YLAI’s 2016 seminar in Peru, where she shared her business module with young leaders across the world.

CEO of Global Ties Alabama and Soaring LLC, Ms. Jacquelyn Shipe, also attended the conference. With its focus on women’s work in the public sector, private sector and also on the youth perspective, the event was well attended by several women entrepreneurs and budding entrepreneurs throughout Guyana. It is being held under the theme ‘Empowered leadership in 2017’.

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First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger expresses her gratitude to Ms. Jacquelyn Shipe, after she presented her with a token of appreciation at the conference.

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