Mr. Felix Francois
1. Mr. Francois has been employed with the Foundation from April 6th 1994 to Present, i.e. 25 years
2. I have held the following positions in the past: Office Assistant, Training Assistant, Training Officer and my present position is Senior Training Officer.
3. Mr. Melvin Edwards, former Executive Director gave me an opportunity to work with an organization that provided an avenue for the youth and marginalized people to blossom, flourish and grow exponentially through a suite of professional educational programmes and entrepreneurship.
4. Some of my families and friends often-times tease by saying: you still working at NRDF; some call me Mr. NRDF because of my loyalty and passion to assisting students, tutors and anyone who visit our office, call via mobile, landline or through social media. My business is to ensure that I provide excellent customer service to all and sundry so that they feel welcome as a friend of the NRDF.
5. I have been serving on the Training & Marketing committee for the past 12 years, I work with a cadre of highly qualified professionals from whom I have learnt a lot in terms of leadership & strategies, problem solving and new ways to make our customers feel at home when they come to the NRDF. I particularly revere their wealth of knowledge and skills within business environment, we have an Attorney at Law, a Retiree who have worked extensively within regional organizations, the public & private sector, two academics/tutors and my General Manager.
6. The most challenging part(s) as a team-member is to get both the private and public sector to recognize and accept our certificate programmes and to provide our students job opportunities, and of course to ensuring that our students pay their fees on time among other things.
7. The most valuable lesson I have learnt so far is that you need to be focused on improving yourself through continuous self-development by way of educating yourself. At present I am pursuing the Diploma Level 6 in Business Management, I have successfully completed both the Diploma Levels 4 & 5 in Marketing Management with the Association of Business Executives (ABE) of the United Kingdom; in addition, I have completed several other courses in areas as Supervisory Skills, Effective Speaking & Writing, Public Relations, Basic, & Intermediate Accounting and Records Management to name a few. I have attended developmental / educational workshops locally and in Trinidad and Tobago on behalf of the Foundation.
8. I have seen many persons coming through our corridors and have been able to make the necessary sacrifices, through hard work and dedication, thereby acquiring a professional qualification, also gaining promotions within industry and thereby improving their quality of life.
9. I perform duties as student counselor/information officer, sales & students’ recruitment officer, training department coordinator etc. I am also responsible for preparing tutors’ contracts, processing tutors payments requests, responding to local, regional and international correspondents as it relates to educational institution among other duties.
NRDF thrust to become more visible has been through being more community oriented, providing courses that are skills based and entrepreneurial so as to assist financially deprived youths, in gaining self-employment. This concept will help to improving its corporate and social responsibility as an entity. Its core value is to focusing on these areas in order to improve its visibility, and to playing its role to improving the quality of life of the vulnerable and the marginalized people.
My vision for the Foundation in the next three to five years is that the Foundation could decentralize its operations and services so that every nuke and cranny in St. Lucia could attest to the fact that NRDF is the hub and premier institute to offering professional certification in Business, Leadership and Entrepreneurship.