Seventy additional persons received their graduation certificates for completing the Ministry of Social Services and Urban Development’s Temperance Life Skills Training Programme. The class consisted of both male and female participants across age classifications. Hosted at the Mt. Pleasant Green Baptist Church, East and Quakoo Streets, Monday’s ceremony, brought the number of persons completing the course to 140 for the year 2019. The training programme was facilitated by Pastor Eric Fox, an Anger and Temperament Management Consultant with the Urban Renewal Commission, and “covered six months of consistent, persistent and vigorous training.” Graduation dates are in June and December.
Minister of Social Services and Urban Development, the Hon. Frankie A. Campbell, applauded the graduates for their steadfastness and willingness to, first, recognize that they faced certain challenges in their lives when it came to anger and temperament management, and then secondly, to stay the course and seek to resolve those issues. “Many of us have issues that we are not dealing with because we are too ashamed to seek help to address those issues. We never get help with our situations because we refuse to recognize and/or acknowledge them,” Minister Campbell said.
“The mere fact that you remained in the programme for the six months, speaks to your determination, speaks to your acceptance that something may have been a bit off-balance, and so I applaud you for your steadfastness and perseverance. There is no shame in your participation.” Minister Campbell also spoke to a graduate’s testimonial about resolving anger management issues that stemmed from “loving too hard.” “Anger isn’t the only emotion we can mismanage,” Minister Campbell said. “If you ‘love too hard’ you can mismanage that too because someone spoke about scraping someone’s car in the name of love. And so I say to you, continue to seek balance.”
Minister Campbell also urged the graduates to continue to surround themselves with positive influences so that their work would not be in vain. “Don’t worry about those persons who may suggest that you have become soft. It is my fervent belief that what the world needs is a little bit more gentle interaction; a little more appreciating each other, a little bit more trying to understand others as opposed to just trying to get people to understand you.
“I want you to remember that while in the programme, you would have met some persons who would have had similar challenges and some people who would have made similar commitments and because you were of like mind, you succeeded together. That needs to continue. You need to continue to surround yourselves with positive people. You don’t need to surround yourself with those people who will encourage you to continue along those paths you traveled prior to participating in the programme,” Minister Campbell added. The Social Services Minister applauded Pastor Fox for his work – particularly within the urban communities.
“The truth of the matter is that none of this would have taken place if one young man had not had a bad experience that caused him to need to go and take stock of himself, which has resulted in him transforming lives. And so I want to recognize Eric Fox for the work he is doing. I am satisfied that it is not about money. I am satisfied that he goes above and beyond.” Minister Campbell encouraged Pastor Fox to continue along the path he has undertaken with the Anger Management and Temperance Training with one addition — that follow-up sessions be held to assess the progress of the graduates. “Because it is important that we get back together and evaluate each other’s progress and we share and commend each other for doing well.”