Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 25, 2018 (SKNIS): The generous assistance given to St. Kitts and Nevis over the years by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) was highlighted on Friday, May 25, when Dr. Aloys Kamuragiye, UNICEF’s Representative for the Caribbean, paid a courtesy call on the Honourable Mark Brantley, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation, in his office at Government Headquarters in the capital Basseterre.
To date, UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories, to save children’s lives, defends their rights, and helps them to fulfill their potential. It has continuously partnered with the Federation over the years to improve the lives of the nation’s children.
According to information provided by the Ministry of Community and Social Development, UNICEF several years ago sponsored a consultancy to review the operations at the New Horizons Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre. The consultant revised the operational manual, updated the job descriptions, provided training for the officers and developed a diversion plan. UNICEF has also partnered with the OECS Commission under the USAID sponsored Juvenile Justice Reform Project on several initiatives that have benefited St. Kitts and Nevis. This included the recent consultancy to do a situational analysis on child protection and juvenile justice services in St. Kitts and Nevis. The results from the consultancy were recently presented to stakeholders who made significant input into drafting an action plan to address the identified issues.
In 2015, UNICEF partnered with the West Indies Cricket Board to host a Child Protection workshop with coaches in St. Kitts and Nevis. In 2017, the organization funded a local consultation on the drafting of a child protection protocol. The recommendations from stakeholders are under consideration and it is anticipated that the protocol will go to Cabinet later in the year.
UNICEF is also credited for funding and implementing the Child Friendly School Initiative which exists in most schools in the Federation, which is implemented in collaboration with the Ministry of Education. The initiative involves life skills-based health and family life education; parental and community involvement; child participation and child-centered classrooms. UNICEF also launched its flagship report of the state of the world’s children in St. Kitts in 2017.
On April 3, 2018, as part of the Youth Month activities in Nevis, UNICEF sponsored “Activate “Talks, which is a global series of talks promoting dialogue among change makers from all walks, encouraging persons to rethink and rework how they can deliver results for the most vulnerable and marginalized adolescent and youth.
The UNICEF Representative also met with officials from the Department of Statistics, the Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Community and Social Development. He also used the opportunity to tour the Horizons Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre, and is slated to meet with Prime Minister, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris.
Dr. Kamuragiye is a national of Burundi and took up his assignment as UNICEF Representative for the Eastern Caribbean Area on November 1, 2017. He served as UNICEF Representative to Djibouti and Morocco and most recently the UNICEF Congo Office in Brazzaville from August 2013 to September 2017, just before arriving in Barbados.