Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the writer(s) don’t represent the official position of Barbados TODAY.
by John Goddard
It’s time for the federal government to think about new ways of moving Barbados forward. First, tourism has served us well but must be expanded, and new industries developed.
Educational tourism has room for development. Other than the encouragement of offshore universities, private residents might be given incentives to determine boarding schools catering to secondary students from everywhere in the world.
After I was a schoolboy, there have been 4 such schools accommodating each day boys and boarders: The Lodge School, Mapps College, Presentation College, and Codrington High School. Those of us who attended such institutions learned to be tolerant and to understand different cultures.
Very importantly, the island earned much-needed foreign exchange and Bajans found work providing cooking, laundering, and cleansing services. I believe that with a reformed educational system, we could attract wealthy foreign students searching for a new educational experience.
Moving from education, I wish to show to Sports and Culture. Any serious government must see the big advantages of investing in Sports and Culture. If our athletes are to succeed in world-class standards, we must first provide adequate resources, starting with a brand new national stadium.
Within the sixties, a Democratic Labour Party government built the primary national stadium, but the current government must do whatever is crucial to make sure that our athletes are supplied with a facility that might motivate them to do their best.
The winning of a bronze medal within the Women’s 400 metres by Sada Williams on the World Athletics Championship should shame us into recognising that she did it without having the ability to train and compete at a national stadium within the land of her birth. Briefly, we contributed little or no to her success.
Secondly, more have to be done to advertise sports at primary and secondary schools. At present, Physical Education is the Cinderella subject in our schools. That attitude have to be delivered to a screeching halt.
In the identical way that we view skipping classes in Maths seriously, we must adopt the identical attitude to Physical Education. There must not be excuses for youngsters not wearing game uniforms or hiding elsewhere on the compound during Physical Educational periods.
Encouragement have to be given to oldsters to let their children with sporting abilities proceed playing sports even in senior school. The concept that academics and sports don’t mix has been debunked ages ago. In actual fact, once I was a schoolboy, the brightest boys were also the highest cricketers, footballers and track and field athletes.
On the difficulty of culture, there isn’t any doubt that this small island is blessed with an abundance of talent. What our artistes need is support.
There isn’t any point in having a Cultural Industries Act if it just isn’t going to be fully used to develop those we now consult with as creatives. If our musicians, singers, dramatists, visual artists, craftsmen and ladies, and food specialists amongst others receive the assistance they deserve, the world market is open to them and Barbados will profit from a new and lucrative industry.
With regard to funding, I do know that the lottery presently provides some financial help, but that just isn’t nearly enough.
I believe it’s crucial to have the Lottery run by the state in order that the profits might be used to finance Sports and Culture.
And while we’re at it, sports individuals and creatives must be benefitting from duty-free items which can be crucial for his or her businesses.
Barbadians must move beyond being consumers of technology to being innovators. Government should put money into a facility that might be used for presented information technology specialists to provide video games for the local, Caribbean and international markets.
All we want is to garner a really small a part of the video games trade and we are able to provide decent work for our youth while earning helpful foreign exchange.
For society to advance, the health system must improve. Since assuming the reins of power, the current administration has imposed a health levy, appointed a highly paid Executive Director for the QEH, and constructed a new Accident and Emergency constructing. Unfortunately, there was little or no change in service delivery on the hospital.
If anything the waiting time on the hospital has increased.
I believe it’s time for a dedicated gun crime unit on the institution where victims of gunshots might be taken for urgent treatment. One fundamental advantage of this initiative is that it might unlock staff not coping with such injuries, to take care of other cases of emergency.
At present, too many resources must be diverted from treating real illnesses to attempting to treat those that suffer gunshot wounds. The levy ought to be providing enough money for us to run a more efficient hospital.
One other concern is the standard of food served on the tertiary care facility. Sick people need nutritious and engaging food to facilitate healing. Too often, the food leaves much to be desired and doesn’t take into accounts the dietary needs of patients. Higher can and have to be done.
The reality is that with effective leadership, this little rock can really “punch above its weight”, versus lining up with our begging bowls searching for scraps from countries who care nothing about small states akin to ours.
John Goddard retired but was at all times an educator.