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Dec 19, 2002

Micro credit programme opened for youth

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Today the initiative called Youth for the Future got down to business–quite literally, as it was time to pass the cash. Money, as News 5′s Marion Ali explains, that will have to be paid back.

Marion Ali, Reporting

Youth for the Future’s Executive Director, Nuri Muhammad, handed out the cheques to finance the business ambitions of four budding entrepreneurs. The loans, totalling over twenty-four thousand dollars, are from the Initiative’s one million-dollar micro credit programme. Mervin Lambey, coordinator of the Youth Enterprise Unit, says any youth with a sound business plan is welcomed to apply.

Mervin Lambey, Coordinator of Youth Enterprise Unit

“We will process young people when they come in and then we refer them to the Small Farmers’ Bank where the actual transactions will occur.”

“The normal commercial sector is not as sensitive to some of the problems that young persons might have. They might lack collateral, they might have creative ideas, they’re required a little bit more monitoring, they support and supervision, and those missing elements are what the Youth for the Future will provide…We’ve put in a number of mechanisms to ensure that we get young people who have the propensity to repay.”

For recipient Gilroy Hardiman, the loan has brought his dream one step closer to reality.

Gilroy Hardiman

“I really want to start a landscaping business, lawn care, dealing with gardening, cutting yards, building gardens, everything concerning yard cleaning.”

Marion Ali

“How this loan will help you with that?”

Gilroy Hardiman

“It’s going to help me with my materials, with some equipments; some weed eaters, some lawn mowers, and transportation, which is very vital.”

Loans will range from two hundred to over five thousand dollars, depending on the need. The current interest rate is ten percent. Marion Ali for News 5.

The recipients of the first loan disbursements include Brian Matura and his wife Jesse, Jerome Crawford, and Winston Hutchinson.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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