NTA trained 1,640 vulnerable youth since June 2017

PM expects 70 percent job placement rate for graduates in 2019/2020

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Since the Minnis administration assumed office, 1,640 “vulnerable young Bahamians” have been trained in basic life and technical skills via the National Training Agency (NTA), according to Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis.

During the wrap-up to the 2019/2020 budget debate, the prime minister said the program has achieved a 55 percent job placement rate.

He touted the success of the program and projected that the job placement rate of graduates from the NTA will increase to 70 percent in the next phase.

Last year alone, 460 young men and women were hired in full-time jobs in various sectors.

Minnis also said of the 278 at-risk youth trained at the NTA, 125 of them were able to gain full-time employment.

He noted that the government plans to work closely with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and has to date placed facilitated the fulltime employment of 200 young Bahamians.

“We are experiencing a 95 percent success rate in certification in the area of soft-skills,” he said.

“We are experiencing a 91 percent success rate for certification in the are of technical skills.

“Since 2017, the agency has increased revenue, and reduced dependency on government by 33 percent and we will continue working to reduce this dependency even further.

“Such programs offer new hope to young people and redirect some from a possible life of crime.”

The government provided $985,000 as a subvention to the NTA in 2018/2019 for the NTA.

The subvention was marginally increased to $990,975 for the upcoming budget.

The agency is expected to receive $985,000 in 2020/2021 and the same in 2021/2022.

The agency was launched under the Christie administration in July 2013.

The government initially allocated $1 million to set up the agency with plans to train between 2,000 and 2,500 people annually.

The program was also expected to reach at-risk youth.

The agency focused on young people, who are unemployed and unprepared for the workforce.

As of November 2018, 5,000 Bahamians had received skills training and mandatory work force preparation.

Another 2,600 people are expected to be trained this year and 2020.

“I wish to emphasize that the agency’s core focus is on youth between the ages of 16 to 30, who are unemployed and unprepared for the workforce,” Minnis said.

“These for the most part are individuals from inner-city communities.