ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The Gilbert Agricultural and Rural Development Centre (GARD Centre) is distancing itself from alleged scammers who were in St John’s, yesterday, soliciting funds for the Caribbean Youth Empowerment Programme (CYEP) due to begin in June.
The illegal activity was foiled on Monday when a would-be victim alerted the non-profit organisation that persons were soliciting cash on behalf of GARD.
The perpetrators were walking around with GARD posters for the upcoming courses and their own personalised sponsorships forms.
Project Manager of GARD Chris Lacey described the activity as an “interesting development” as the CYEP courses are free of charge.
“The interesting thing for us is that the programmes themselves are free. We ask for a deposit at the beginning of $100, but everyone who completes the programme gets that money back. So essentially, the courses are free,” Lacey told OBSERVER Media.
Lacey said the person who alerted the institution of the incident presented a scan of the fraudulent document she was given.
“From what we understand from her, various persons have been going around and asking persons to sponsor them $20 or $5 and by the looks of it have been getting a fair amount of cash,” Lacey said.
The project manager said based on the information he has received, close to 40 persons have already fallen prey to the scam.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)