‘LIME Mentorship program good for the community’
October 23, 2009
‘LIME Mentorship program good for the community’

“Not the sexy topic that sells newspapers but the success of this program will make our society better and the world a better place to live”.{{more}} That’s the view of Jamaica facilitator Dr. Courtney Richards, as LIME hosted its mentorship programme for the second year at its Arnos Vale complex from October 12th to 16th. The programme was held in partnership with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of National Mobilization, Social Development, Gender Affairs, Youth and Sports.

Dr. Richards is a senior lecturer in Psychology, Counseling and Spiritual Formation. He is also a former Head of the Behavioral and Social Sciences Department of the Jamaica Theological Seminary. He started the mentorship programme in Grenada in 2005 and came to St Vincent and the Grenadines in 2008 after an invitation from Country Manager Angus Steele.

The goal of the program is to assist participants in understanding the underlying reasons why youths in the Caribbean need mentors; to understand the qualities that mentor and mentee need to exhibit; to explore and learn critical factors in the mentorship process and relationships; to learn basic people-helping and relationship-building skills; learn how to speak into the lives of mentees to impact their psycho-emotional and spiritual development and to learn key steps in setting up a mentorship program.

“We continue to see a significant growth in the number of participants. So far we have trained 150 participants and my only concern is that there are not enough persons from the Grenadines, something we can improve on in the future. The students are first class and the calibre of individuals is excellent. I have no doubt that these students will do a good job as they go back to their social groups whether it be church group, schools or sport groups and engage their students,” noted Dr. Richards.

He continued: “There seems to be an increase in heinous crimes committed by young persons and it must be addressed. Some of these kids need positive role models and my hope is that the mentees will take this information back to their social groups and that the information can impact positively on their lives to reduce these social ills. Kids in Jamaica are no different to those here in St Vincent and the Grenadines except it may be on a smaller scale here due to economies of scale but the information is just as important. LIME must take full credit for initiating this program in St Vincent and the Grenadines but we need more support from the private sector.”

Sandra Matthews, LIME VP Human Resources, expressed the view that this program will add value to communities in many diverse ways from environment, culture, sports and education. She continued “LIME was recently recognized by the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Chamber of Industry and Commerce (SVGCIC) as Best in Community Involvement for doing good work in the community. In many respects this mentorship program is ranked one of the best initiatives that we have embarked on. There is no doubt that LIME is giving back in many ways to the society.”

Peter Pompey, Guidance Officer in the Ministry of Education Student Support Center, found the program very timely, commendable and very important and stated: “I will use this information in my school and church for children with absentee fathers and who need special attention.”

Diamond resident and Counselor at the Immediate High School, Cutelyn Morgan, opined that the programme is informative and like Pompey she will use it to assist students in school and in her community who are in need of special attention. All participants expressed gratitude to LIME for implementing the program and encourage other companies to do likewise and give back to the community in meaningful ways.

The Mentorship programs saw participants from the Police DARE program, Ministry of National Mobilization, Teachers, Social Workers, Church and Community Groups and other government departments in this year’s programme.