The STEP Programme


Dear Diary,

The STEP programme—I’m sure most, if not all of our readers, have heard of. It is a programme which has brought about much debate; many are of the opinion that workers who are part of this project are not as efficient as they should be, because there is a lot of chatter, and that there are quicker, less expensive methods to get the job done; a counterargument by others, it creates employment.

My focus however, will not be on the aforementioned debate, but on the young people who are involved in this programme. Earlier this week, whilst making my way to work, I saw a number of individuals young and middle-aged, cleaning an area. I was particularly pleased when I noticed a number of young men were part of what is regarded as an “embarrassing” task by many— some people will tell you, they would prefer staying unemployed than to be seen doing this— they I’m sure many will agree, have not seen real hard times. Because when push comes to shove, we all know, that there’s really no other option unless one resorts to the unthinkable of course.

As you know, a number of young men who lime on what is commonly known as “the block” would opt to stay in infamous areas, rather than do a job of this kind, (and vice versa). Seeing young people involved sans pride, happily weeding, made me smile.

Earlier this week, a young woman on a public transport was proudly sharing a story with not just her friends, but everyone who was on board, that she is not embarrassed to be part of the programme; “mm, mm, girl, when I walk down the road with my cutlass, you think anybody have style more than me? Step I stepping, I’m getting paid!”

I was amused and a chuckle escaped my lips. Apparently, everyone on the bus found the situation engrossing; we could not help it. I felt happy that she was unashamed to be part of the programme. When I hear stories like these, and those similar in nature, like children proudly stating that they are unashamed of their parents who are market vendors, (another job, some frown upon), it makes me let out a blissful sigh. I will also gladly tell you I would catch a ride on a disposal truck if I were getting a ride. Like that young woman said, “You think anybody have style more than me?” Ha! That line stuck with me. Interesting story, so I had to share.

That’s all for today guys,

Have a wonderful weekend.

P.S. My visit to my Alma mater (Babonneau Secondary), after all these years was great! Be sure to read the story on Kimani Melius, a product of the school. Such a wonderful individual who will go on to accomplish great things I’m sure!