The Women’s Innovation and Investment Network (WIIN) programme registration numbers have soared to 10,000 applications countrywide. This is according to Human Services and Social Security Minister, Dr Vindhya Persaud.
On Wednesday, Persaud stated that there has been a significant increase in applicants for the WIIN since the opening of the programme’s registration portal on June 3.
“The response to WIIN has been overwhelming, thank you for choosing WIIN. the numbers have touched 10,000 and so it means that 10,000 persons…from across all of the regions have seized this opportunity to register for the WIIN programme,” she said.
WIIN is one of the Ministry’s flagship programmes, which was launched in Baramita, Region One (Barima-Waini), in May of last year, to highlight the programme’s accessibility in hinterland areas.
Despite the high volume of applications, the Minister encouraged more women from the hinterland regions to apply.
“We would like to see so many more of you joining the WIIN family, those in Region Six, those in Region 10, those in the hinterland regions. Remember that we have a hybrid model programme, which allows you to learn with us online or in person. So, we are making every opportunity available to you, so that you can be trained free of cost. It can change your life, you can become an entrepreneur, your own business owner and of course, we will be very proud of you,” the Minister said.
She stated that phase two of the programme was expected to be launched since the Ministry could not facilitate all 10,000 applicants this year. Also, a new course will be added for phase two.
She said, “Even if we cannot accommodate all 10,000 this year, we will be keeping you on register so that you will have your opportunity through the WIIN programme. There will be a second phase of WIIN and if those of you who would have applied within this first phase would not have been able to be accommodated, usually because of budgetary constraints, we will definitely look at you being a part of the WIIN programme in the second phase and also in the phase there will be a newer course added to this complement of courses.”
WIIN offers accredited certificates in multiple disciplines from agencies such as ABMA UK, ROYTECH through the University of the West Indies, and the Institute of Distance and Continuing Education of the University of Guyana.
WIIN was conceptualised to provide women with the tools for financial stability and empowerment through accredited technical and vocational training courses.
Since the programme’s launch, 2170 women have been trained in multiple disciplines specific to the needs of their demographic area. Upon graduating from the WIIN programme, women are directed into entrepreneurship and provided with funding and other support services.
In Budget 2022, a sum of $173 million was allocated to advance courses offered through the WIIN programme. This has already seen new courses being introduced this year, with a number of Guyanese taking advantage to date.
The WINN courses include Graphics Design & Photography, Child Care, Care for the Elderly, Garment Construction, Home Management, and Television and Video Production.