Government of Dominica


Fifty seven-individuals have received certificates for the successful completion of their respective entrepreneurial training programs, as the Dominica Youth Business Trust in collaboration with the Ministry Of Culture, Youth, Sports and Community Development hosted their 19th graduation and awards ceremony at the Windsor Park Stadium Forecourt on November 22, 2023.

Nathaniel Lovell and Althia Joy Watty were the recipients of the Determined Entrepreneurs Awards 2023.

Coordinator of DYBT, Hon. Phillip Rolle, says the 19th graduation ceremony recognizes the commitment and success of the entrepreneurs.

“Today marks the 19th graduation and awards ceremony of the Dominica Youth Business Trust and I am thrilled to be here celebrating alongside our graduants and awardees. We gather here today to applaud the achievements of a remarkable group of young entrepreneurs who have successfully completed diverse entrepreneurship training programmes. Their journey has been characterized by resilience, creativity and unwavering determination today we come to recognize and applaud their success,” Hon. Rolle stated.

 Hon. Rolle says the support and investment of the DYBT is fueled by the substantial impact of entrepreneurs on the economy. 

“As a business support organization, we understand the immense potential and the impact that the youth can have on the economy. This is why the DYBT takes pride in providing support, inspiration and guidance to our young entrepreneurs. Our goal is to transform young job seekers into job creators. Our commitment extends beyond the establishment of businesses, it is about empowering young individuals to transform their passion, skills and ideas into tangible realities in doing so they can contribute to economic growth, generate employment opportunities and provide essential goods and services to their communities,”  he noted.

He provided an overview of their activities leading up to the 19th graduation and awards ceremony.

“Throughout the period, we were able to host a total of four successful training programs including our flagship Entrepreneurial Development Program, which is our business incubator type program and the Small Business Assistance Facility which is our accelerated type program. The 17th EDPU hosted a total of eighteen up and coming entrepreneurs for a four week period, while between the two SBF programs, thirty-one existing entrepreneurs were trained. The trust also is proud to have trained eight social entrepreneurs over the period with social missions that seek to tackle issues of the environment, training and development of at-risk youth, among others,” he added.

Among those graduating was Ms. Annelle John the owner of J-Star who completed the 17th Entrepreneurial Development Program (EDP). She spoke of the impact the EDP had on her journey as an entrepreneur.

“The EDP has been an invaluable asset in my development of a young female entrepreneur. I extend an earnest invitation to all young individuals whether you possess a bold or a mere speck of an idea to join this program. It has not only transformed my life but has significantly impacted my family,” she stated.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Culture, Youth, Sports and Community Development, Hon. Oscar George highly commended the DYBT and the newly graduated cohort.

“I want to commend the entire DYBT team for their energy, their passion and their diligence on a daily basis. Let’s give DYBT a huge round of applause. Sometimes they say we are hard on them. I believe it’s in good cause because we are seeing the fruits of their hard work again congratulations DYBT. We are very proud of the growing accomplishments of the DYBT particularly over the last few years, so on behalf of the Ministry. I again extend sincere congratulations to the fifty-seven graduates who will receive their certificates this afternoon,” he stated.

Hon. George says he was impressed by the determined male and female entrepreneurs for 2023.

Meanwhile, Minister for Health, Wellness and Social Services, Hon. Cassanni Laville represented the Hon. Prime Minister of Dominica at the graduation and awards ceremony where he delivered the featured address. Hon. Laville offered his advice to the young entrepreneurs. He encouraged them to embrace their uniqueness as businesses

“Embrace your uniqueness. We are all different. We all have special skills. We all have special talents. I should not try to be you. You should not try to be me. Let us all celebrate our uniqueness and our own identity,’ he stated.

The Minister advised individuals to embrace different strategic approaches instead of competing directly with others offering the same product.

The Dominica Youth Business Trust was launched in 2004 and continues to profoundly impact the entrepreneurial landscape in Dominica.

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