Hundreds of Caymanians and residents took part in beautifications projects around Cayman in December and then again in January, projects that gave two weeks of work to the unemployed as well as enhanced the appearance of public areas. Newly released figures indicate that a total of 742 people registered to work with the Government’s National Enhancement (NiCE) Project, one of which was held from 7th to 18th December 2020 and another from 11th to 22nd January 2021.
The projects were led by the Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, and gave work to 684 Caymanians and 58 people married to Caymanians.
Project Manager, Lois Kellyman said Covid-19 restrictions had them operate slightly differently this year, the third year that the Ministry had led the effort.
“We decided to undertake NiCE registration last November in the districts to keep within national COVID-19 regulations, which limit gatherings of more than 500 people,” Mrs Kellyman said.
As a result, smaller work groups than usual were deployed to work with supervisors from WORC, the Department of Environment, Public Works Department, National Roads Authority. Groups were also assigned to the Mosquito Research & Control Unit and the Agricultural Grounds.
As well as clearing scrub, roadside remediation work and clearing beach accesses, NiCE teams tackled general maintenance work at the Agricultural Grounds and refurbishment of the truck scale at the George Town Landfill.
CPI Minister, Joey Hew, said over the years, they had developed the project into a multi-agency programme, including WORC and others, that played a pivotal role in the employment and training of Caymanians.
“I think we are at a place where we can extend the programme. We can look to start partnering with other agencies and perhaps extend the project over a longer period of time and use as a training programme, a second chance programme, a bit of a rehabilitation or on the work training programme for some of the folks who are fully able and capable of working but for whatever reason unable to find full-time employment at this time,” he advised.
“We were pleased to offer gainful temporary employment in the run up to Christmas and in the new year to retirees who still felt able to put in a few weeks as well as the under employed and those who are unable to work for varying reasons,” Minister Hew said.