The first graduation ceremony in Anguilla from the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank’s (ECCB) Entrepreneurship Course, a division of the Savings and Investment Programme, has taken place at the Teachers’ Resource Centre.
The eighteen course participants, who graduated on September 29, were Salih Abdur-Raheem, Rosana Browne, Michael Daniel, Marcell Dottin, Petol Dunn, Keon Halley, Kareen Harrigan, David Hinds, Juliet Hughes, Larricia Lacorbiniere,LindaT.Lake, Karen Mussington, Vickey Niles, Dawn Olton, Maria Reid, Melva Richardson, Shauna Richardson and Aron Ruan.
ECCB’s Resident Representative in Anguilla, Ms. Marilyn Bartlett-Richardson, said that in 2002 the Central Bank developed a ten-week Savings and Investment Course as a means of empowering the citizens of the Currency Union with basic finance and investment skills. The programme was piloted in Montserrat in 2003 and was followed in 2011 with the piloting of the Entrepreneurship Course in St. Kitts.
“The bank strongly feels that the development of a financially literate population will be critical to the economic development of the member countries [including Anguilla], and will improve the well being of the people,” Ms. Bartlett-Richardson said. “The bank is also committed to the creation and growth of small business, hence the introduction of the Entrepreneurship Course.” She stated that the course was made possible through partnerships with the University of the West Indies, the Anguilla Community College and various other corporates including the Ministry of Finance and financial institutions.
The facilitators for the course were drawn from the Commercial Banks, the Financial Services Commission, Social Security Board, Insurance and other companies.
The graduation ceremony was chaired by Principal Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs, Kenneth Hodge. “I think this course was extremely timely and I dare say relevant to the times in which we live ” he commented. “We continue to feel the effects of the world-wide recession, but I believe these times we live in provide a platform for entrepreneurship.”
Mr. Hodge told the graduates that he was looking forward to seeing them develop their own niche in the Anguillian marketplace. “Try to create for yourself a unique product that no one else has,” he advised. “I believe if we try to be unique in our little way, in our business, we all will be successful. The more businesses we have, the more prosperous Anguilla will become.”
One of the other two speakers was Dawn Olton, whose remarks were delivered from a student’s viewpoint with regard to the enjoyment and importance of the course; and Rosana Browne, another student, who read an address entitled “My Journey as an Entrepreneur”. That address was written by Lisa Webster, Proprietor of Mini Lisa’s Tranquil Villa Management and Hair R Nails, who was unavoidably absent.
The presentation of certificates was done by Ms. Bartlett-Richardson assisted by Mrs. Arlene Browne of the University of the West Indies Open Campus in Anguilla.