Blue CAPS founder Clinton Urling says the group has managed to pull off several substantial undertakings on a shoestring budget.
The group has implemented several initiatives including establishing its website, launching a campaign to push for local government elections, and completed its one-month long Building Communi-ties through Leadership Training and Service (BCLTS) project since hitting the limelight two months ago.
Highlighting the group’s accomplishments, Urling says activities have been helped along by the publicity Blue CAPS is receiving, which has been both positive and critical in nature. People, he says, are becoming aware of the group and its intentions, and are rendering assistance in various ways. He said though that the group has not commenced fund raising and will not do so until Blue CAPS is legally incorporated. Since the group emerged there has been speculation that its allegiance lies either with A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) or the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C), although, as Urling has pointed out, Blue CAPS has been perceived with suspicion and criticised by the very sides the group is accused of being friendly with.
More recently, the PPP/C suggested that Blue CAPS may have some affiliation with the United States Embassy in Guyana, and more specifically, former US Ambassador to Guyana Brent Hardt.
The PPP/C’s suggestions stemmed from statements made by Hardt at the conclusion ceremony of BCLTS. Delivering remarks, Hardt called on the government of Guyana to hold local government elections, and said that the Donald Ramotar administration ought to stop selectively enforcing constitutional provisions.
Urling however, says that the group remains independent of all political influences, and committed to its mandates of creating a platform for young people to express themselves and develop public policy positions, and to provide leadership training.
BCLTS ran from June 6th to 28th. The undertaking comprised two components. The first was the Youth Experiencing Service (YES) through community service which kicked off June 14th. The other component was the Youth Development Pro-gramme during which participants were instructed in various leadership skills. The various topics under the programme were facilitated by specialists who, Urling says, volunteered their time, knowledge and expertise. He also says that the venue used for the theoretical instructions, the New Guyana School, was made available at no charge.
Also, the meals served during the weeks of instructions were provided compliments of German’s Restaurant, which is owned by Urling. Thirty young leaders across several non-governmental organisations in Guyana benefited from BCLTS and Urling says they will all become Blue CAPS fellows.
The BCLTS was held at the Duke Lodge, which Urling says was made available to the group, again, at no charge.
Urling also says that the group’s website – bluecaps.gy – was designed and created by a member of its steering committee. The website was done free of cost as well.