HRD Strategy belongs to Caribbean Community
Programme Manager, Human Resource Development at the CARICOM Secretariat, Dr. Laurette Bristol, has stressed that the HRD Strategy belonged to the Caribbean Community and not to the CARICOM Secretariat.
She was speaking at the opening of the first regional workshop aimed at strengthening national capacity to support the 2030 Human Resource Development Strategy (2030 HRDS). The workshop is being held at the Courtyard Marriott in Barbados, May 22-25, 2018.
Dr. Bristol encouraged participants to be willing to give of themselves and learn from each other while being willing to accept responsibility for their part in the success of the Strategy.
“We need to reach out to each other in the Region and create strong networks, share best practices, foster national development and promote regional resilience and sustainability”, she opined.
According to her, the working sessions over the next few days would serve the implementation of the HRD Strategy through the creation of deliberate opportunities for Caribbean collegiality. She said it was her hope that the workshops materialised into a living model of a cross-sectorial Centre of Excellence. She also used the opportunity to thank the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) for its contribution to the monitoring and evaluation of the HRD 2030 strategy.
“The Caribbean Community thanks you for your commitment to regional development. I want to also express my appreciation to all our Caribbean stakeholders for making a choice to invest in our shared future, giving generously of your limited time and incredible expertise”, she said.
Vice- President, Operations at the CDB, Monica La Bennett, in her remarks, said the CDB recognised that one of the critical areas of intervention in addressing poverty alleviation was the development of human capital. According to her the research was unambiguous and the incidences of systemic poverty correlated with low levels of educational attainment and certification.
“Put another way, economic competitiveness and wealth creation are premised on a highly skilled and certified workforce with the competencies for innovation, technology-driven development, social cohesion and the commitment to peace and well-being”, she said.
She said the implementation of the Strategy was not just desirable, but important for the continued transformation of the Region. She encouraged participants to help move the document from policy to action and from strategy to results. According to her, the education and training system in the Region was at a critical juncture, which required sustained action to address some of the structural deficits that had plagued the post-independence HRD system.
“Our progress has been laudable on many fronts, including our achievement of universal secondary education in the majority of countries, promotion of skills development especially in the last decade, expansion of access to pre-primary education and notable efforts to address the special needs and exceptionalities of learners across the Region”, she pointed out.
The CARICOM Human Resource Development 2030 Strategy was approved by the Thirty-Second Meeting of the Council for Human and Social Development (COHSOD) in March 2017, in Georgetown, Guyana, and was subsequently endorsed by the Thirty-Eighth Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government, in July 2017, in St. George’s, Grenada. The implementation strategy was the main focus of the most recent meeting of COHSOD, which was held in Georgetown Guyana last month.