The Commonwealth Youth Worker of the Year for the Caribbean has been announced as Manuela Lue, from Belize. Ms Lue is director of the Energy for Life program, which mentors and tutors under-privileged Belizean youth in handicraft production, connecting them with their culture and enabling them to earn a living.
Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland, who presented the awards at a ceremony on Thursday, November 10, 2016, at the Commonwealth Secretariat’s headquarters, Marlborough House, in London, stated:
“I salute the hugely impressive recipients of these 2016 Commonwealth Youth Worker Awards. They represent thousands of youth workers across the Commonwealth whose work to empower and engage our young people too often goes unsung and unrecognized. It is of immense and enduring value in building resilient communities and overcoming the economic and social divisions that create vulnerability – locally, national and globally.”
“Through these annual awards, the Commonwealth seeks progressively to raise the profile of the youth work profession, a sector which makes a real difference to individual and national wellbeing. Let the commitment and impact of the youth workers we are recognizing be an inspiration to policy-makers, peers and young people everywhere.”
Ms. Lue said, “Youth workers do an extremely important job which is moulding the minds and shaping the hearts of all these young people. It is very important as there’s a lot of work that goes into making these young people productive and responsible citizens. I hope to go back with more ideas about how to grow the program and how to make it bigger and better.”
The Commonwealth Youth Worker Awards were announced during Youth Work Week 2016, which runs from 7-13 November. The theme of the week this year is ‘Empowering young people through sport and arts’, acknowledging the creative and innovative techniques employed by youth workers to deliver effective youth empowerment programs.
Click Here to Read Up on all the Winners of the Commonwealth Youth Worker of the Year Awards