Mentoring Workshop

On Wednesday, 12 August, the Scotiabank/CoESL’s Bridging the Gap Project & Regional Conference culminated with the hosting of a Business Mentoring Workshop, hosted by GARD Center- the affiliate and representative for CoESL in Antigua.
This event was held in the conference room of the Environmental Division on Parliament Drive, with 15 participants mostly under the age of 35, who operate businesses in e-commerce, agro-processing, agriculture, craft, natural hair products, and graphic designing. Six of these already have established small businesses, while the other nine attendees were ‘potential’ entrepreneurs.
CoESL which abbreviates for Caribbean Centre of Excellence and Sustainable Livelihoods is a Caribbean partnership of islands that focus and advocate strongly on providing sustainable development through entrepreneurship in the Caribbean. CoESL’s initiative includes other participating territories such as St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Belize, Bahamas, Jamaica, Grenada, Trinidad & Tobago, and St. Kitts & Nevis.
The topic of this Mentoring workshop was, ‘Bookkeeping: Leveraging and Separating Your Personal and Business Finances’ which was presented by Lorraine Perry, the Regional Sales Manager of the Eastern Caribbean for Scotiabank.
Each participating island was responsible for identifying a suitable topic for the workshop. The GARD Center’s Business Development Officer- Johan Oliver, selected this topic based on needs from previous training exercises.
August 12 was recognized as International Youth Day.  It was welcoming to acknowledge the young entrepreneurs who were present for the workshop, including past students of the GARD Center who are currently operating small businesses in sustainable ventures such as farming, agro-processing, and craft. The discussions and interaction were very well received by all participants as Scotiabank and their representatives maintained a high energy level and informative environment. Scotiabank also provided paraphernalia and prizes during the workshop in gratitude of the enthused participants.
The GARD Center and its Business Development Unit continues to provide business support services to all youth and young entrepreneurs. Commencing September 2015, the Center will be hosting Business Management Courses for a period of twelve (12) weeks, which will include marketing and sales, cost and pricing, finance and budgeting, customer service, and computer literacy.
Registration is ongoing until the end of August. Please call 734-0084 or 463-4121 for more information.