Under the micro credit scheme, 1326 women received loans and have expanded business venture, according to Jennifer Webster, Minister of Human Services and Social Security.
This disclosure was made at the Ministry’s end of the press conference yesterday.
Government operates a micro-credit revolving fund scheme aimed at assisting single parents. The micro-credit scheme was approved by Cabinet in March 2010. The scheme began initially and minimally with $500 million.
Under the programme-design, funds allocated by the government as well as those provided by financial institutions would be used to finance micro-credit level loans to be made available to eligible single-parents.
Minister Webster explained that the scheme allows single parent women to access collateral free loans within the range of a $100,000 to $200,000 which is an initiative of the Ministry and the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI).
Meanwhile, the Ministry expended over $3.1M to support victims of Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and a total of 23 persons were rescued for 2013. However, there were eleven reports of TIP, four of those matters are currently engaging the attention of the court. There have been four convictions.
She said that Government recently trained 38 persons to deal with the issues of TIP. These persons were trained under a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
“We continue to ensure the protection of women and children in combating Trafficking in Persons and the Ministry does have a special unit – the counter TIP unit and we also work with Non Governmental Organizations including the Guyana Women Miners Association and other volunteer social workers who have been trained to deal with TIP cases,” Minister Webster explained.
“We had to identify at risk persons of TIP and I think that is one of the areas that we stepped up our approach…Sessions were held within Regions One, Two, Six, Seven, Eight and Nine because we feel that we needed to do more work in our hinterland communities because of increased activity in certain sectors such as the mining sector.
“There was a collaborative effort between the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Guyana Geology and Mine Commission and all other key stake holders because it is important to work together and collaborate.”
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