Georgetown, Guyana – (May 7, 2018) First Lady, Mrs. Sandra Granger, this morning, opened the 27th Self Reliance and Success in Business Workshop in Ann’s Grove, East Coast Demerara, where 37 participants, over the next five days, will be given the necessary wherewithal to set up their own businesses or expand existing ones. The training was held at the Ebenezer Congregational Church, Ann’s Grove, East Coast Demerara.
The First Lady in her remarks, told the participants that attendance, along with full participation throughout the duration of the training, is the key to them successfully completing the programme and garnering a certificate which is recognised by the Small Business Bureau of the Ministry of Business. She further urged the participants to register their businesses and to maintain standards of professionalism and integrity in their day to day business operations. “Part of this is to make sure you are confident enough to set up and manage your own businesses … and part of how you manage your business is how you manage people… You have to know how to deal with your customers,” Mrs. Granger said.
The First Lady told the participants that the idea of having a workshop in Ann’s Grove was suggested by former Minister of Social Protection and current Minister of Public Health, Ms. Volda Lawrence and she thanked Minister of Social Protection, Ms. Amna Ally and her Ministry for their continued support of the initiative. “… It empowers women, it encourages them. You don’t only learn how to run a business, but you also you learn to keep your accounts, you learn the importance of yourself, in your family and in your community. So this is why it is called the Self-Reliance and Success in Business Workshop. Many of you know that part of self-reliance is that you have your own money in your pocket, so this is what this workshop will teach you at the most basic level,” she said.
The First Lady then informed that men have also participated and graduated from the workshop, although it is specifically geared at empowering women to help them create, manage and grow their own businesses. “I mean we are a fair-minded, equality-conscious people and any male that has asked to join has been welcomed and has ended up learning a lot more with a group of women,” she said.
Regional Chairman of the Demerara-Mahaica Region (Region Four), Ms. Genevieve Allen, in her brief remarks, congratulated the participants on taking a bold step to empower themselves. She reminded them that they will be given the skills and techniques that will allow them to formulate plans for their ventures and enable them to become empowered, independent and prosperous residents of their community. “What I particularly like about this programme is that it will not only help you to promote yourself as business persons, but it will allow you to become a rounded individual. It will also allow you to identify areas within your community where improvements are needed and that is the aspect that I am looking forwards too,” she said.
Meanwhile, Director – Interweave Solutions (Guyana) Incorporated, Mr. Sanjay Yohann Pooran provided the participants with an overview of the programme, indicating that the workshop will educated them on how to start, manage, and grow small businesses, help them to lead a balanced life and provide them with the opportunity to give back their community with the formulation of a community action plan.
Referencing President David Granger’s remarks in relation to moving beyond production, Mr. Pooran explained that “We are never going to be able to maximise the true potential of Guyanese products if we don’t get it into international markets. We have to broaden our vision if we want to take these products and services to the next level and if we want to broaden our income for ourselves and our country… The real money lies in getting our products on the international scene”.
Thus far, a total of 1030 persons have been trained under this initiative, of which 50 were trained to become trainers.