The islands of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique comprise the south-eastern Caribbean state of Grenada. Grenada’s official language is English, though a variety of dialects are spoken by its 107,000 citizens. Among the most widely used is (French) Patois, which combines English words with elements of French and African languages. St. George’s is the country’s capital and commercial centre, as well as home to more than a third of its population.
According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), 96 per cent of Grenada’s population is literate. The third Global Report on Adult Learning and Education (GRALE III) indicates that the country recognizes the importance of lifelong learning for all its citizens. This is reflected in the fact that the overall participation rate in adult learning and education (ALE) has been increasing since 2009, with men in particular participating more in technical vocational education and training (TVET). Nevertheless, adult and continuing education remains a challenge for Grenada, exacerbated by high levels of unemployment and poverty. It is against this backdrop that the Government of Grenada has committed to promoting TVET as a vehicle to increase access to learning.
While the Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development and Environment oversees the planning, execution and monitoring of education in Grenada, lifelong learning for all is integrated into the work of several ministries. In 2009, the Grenada National Training Agency (NTA) was established to develop, implement and maintain the National Technical and Vocational Education and Training (NTVET) Plan for Grenada. NTA is also a certification authority, which partners with several local and regional industries and evaluates all formal and non-formal training activities in the state of Grenada.
In 2011, the Government of Grenada, together with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (a specialized agency of the United Nations), the Caribbean Development Bank and several national stakeholders, launched the Market Access and Rural Enterprise Development Programme (MAREP). The goal of this programme is to strengthen the life skills and capacities of vulnerable young men and women (16–30 years old) in 50 rural communities in Grenada, by creating micro-enterprises in rural areas and providing local unemployed or self-employed young people with opportunities for employment and personal development.
Caribbean Development Bank. 2014. Country Strategy Paper Grenada 2014–2018. Available at: http://www.caribank.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/BD44_14_CSP_Grenada_2014-18_FINAL.pdf [Accessed 9 March 2017].
Government of Grenada. 2017. About Grenada. Available at: http://www.gov.gd/about_grenada.html [Accessed 9 March 2017].
Grenada Training Agency. 2016. The Functions of NTA. Available at: http://www.grenadanta.gd/nta-functions/.
Ministry of Finance and Energy, Grenada. 2017. MAREP: Market Access and Rural Enterprise Development Programme. Available at: http://finance.gd/index.php/2015-02-12-15-22-52/market-access-and-rural-enterprise-development-programme-marep-1 [Accessed 9 March 2017].
UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) in Barbados; OECS (Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States). 2016. About Grenada. Available at: http://www.bb.undp.org/content/barbados/en/home/countryinfo/grenada.html [Accessed 9 March 2017].
UNESCO Institute for Statistics. 2016. Grenada. Available at: http://uis.unesco.org/country/gd [Accessed 9 March 2017].