Official newsletter
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Title: Official newsletter
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Language: English
Publisher: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Place of Publication: London, England
Creation Date: November 2011
Publication Date: 01-2012
Genre: serial   ( sobekcm )
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January/February March 2012 Issue 147 The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission Official Newsletter Inside This Issue Prime Minister reflects on 8 years of UPP Administration 1 Royal Visit to Antigua 4 CMG for His Excellency Dr Carl Roberts 6 Years Honours List 8 Antigua moves to stem School violence 9 Sir Viv 60 years old 10 Community Centre for Barbuda 10 Cooperative Egg Farm opens in Barbuda 18 Endeavouring all Antigua and Barbuda High Commission, 2nd Floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP Telephone:020 258 0070 Facsimile:020 7258 7486 Email: enquiries@antigua barbuda.com A newsletter produced by the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission London for nationals and friends of Antigua and Barbuda CMG for His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts Companion of The Most Distinguished Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) For Contribution to Public Service See Full Story on Page 6 PM Spencer Reflects On Administration's Anniversary On the 8th anniversary of the United Progressive Party (UPP) Administration, Prime Minister Dr Hon Baldwin Spencer during a sit down interview highlighted the major challenges faced by his Administration as they move forward in their second term of government. The Prime Minister pointed out the last three years has been the most challenging of the UPP administration but the party has pressed ahead while ensuring that its upheld. Spencer singled out the year his Administration spent in flux while awaiting the ruling of the Election Petition said the matter was a and that year spent in limbo (their) duties in a meaningful He also noted one of the greatest challenges has been the down turn of the world economy since 2008. The present economic condition state as it operates within a global context, the Prime Minister said. that we are dealing with this administration has kept the faith and has done the best recognizing its social responsibility and its desire to put people first, we have ensured that our social programs that impact upon the most vulnerable in our socie t y a r e m a i n t a i n e d T h e Prime Minister added. * * * 12th March 2012


2 Vision Statement why not? Over the years we have heard, read about and seen bold statements about the vision of a country, company or individual. What are they and what should they mean or be taken to mean. As an example, the late Barbadian Prime Minister, Hon David Thompson was reported to have said the following: to the Vision of the E team to transform Barbados into: The Number One Entrepreneurial Hub in the World by The word vision is typically associated with strategic planning and is an integral component of the process. Take the statemake better strategic leaders? How do we distil these visions down to a vision statement? From Wikipedia the word vision is defined (for benefit of this article) as: term view and concentrates on the future. One thing is immediately acknowledged. Vision statements relate to the future (near or far depending on the complexity of the objective to be achieved). Vision statements can be broad based i.e. involving several targeted objectives or more specifically focused on one end goal. Take the example of the Barbadian Vision Statement. This could be viewed as specific yet complex: There are several sign posts which can be teased out in analysing the vision statement. Firstly, what is the end objective or goal? To be the Number One could be the immediate answer. This Secondly, how is this assessed? What factors will be useful to determine when the country would have reached the Number One Status? Another question relates to the grouping to be used when judging the ranking of the


3 There are therefore several clear unambiguous elements in this Vision Statement: End Goal or Objective, Assessment Criteria, Relative Grouping, Timeframe. These are just some elements one can draw from the Barbados Vision Statement. I will now look at other transforming regional statements. to make live, work, raise family and do business: and on guiding principles to put people at the centre of Taking both statements together we would note that this is a broader multifaceted vision statement. It has a timeframe but it does not clearly suggest a relative grouping (though this is implied). The assessment criteria relates to living, working, raising families and doing business. The end goal is a transformed Jamaica into the place of choice. Once again the comparative grouping is left to the reader to interpret. The Vision Statement for Trinidad and Tobago reflects similar elements. Trinidad and Tobago will be a united, resilient, productive, innovative and a prosperous nation with a disciplined, caring, fun loving society, encompassing healthy, happy and well edu c a t e d p e o p l e a n d b u i l t o n e n d u r i n g a t t r i b u t e s o f s e l f r e l i a n c e r e s p e c t e q u a l i t y a n d i n t e g r i. It is also a broad statement of values and expectations. I have attempted to find a parallel Vision Statement for Antigua and Barbuda but have been pointed to statements emanating from several sectors of the economy and those of other partners in our counMinistry of Agriculture and the Antigua and Barbuda Public Utilities Authority. I have not been able to confirm a complete Vision Statement for Antigua and Barbuda. There were many statements made by officials of the government which point to expectations and elements of a Vision. An example is the statement related to the use of ICT in Education. The absence needs therefore to be filled quickly as we st Birthday. The presence of a vision statement allows for the critical assessment of being on track and on target both in timing and on final destination. It is hoped that soon we will be able to bring all these separate vision statements into one which motivates and propels citizens of Antigua and Barbuda to take the country forward for the best benefit of future generations. His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts, CMG High Commissioner


4 His Royal Highness, Prince Edward And Her Royal Highness, Sophie Visit Antigua His Royal Highness, Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex and Her Royal Highness, Sophie, the Countess of Wessex visited Antigua and Barbuda on March 6th and 7th. The Prince and Princess journeyed to Antigua and Barbuda as part of a Diamond Jubilee. The pair of Royals visited several countries within the Caribbean, namely, Barbados, Grenada, Montserrat, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad and Tobago before culminating their tour in Antigua and Barbuda then returning to the United Kingdom. The Diamond Jubilee takes place in 2012, marking 60 years came to the throne on 6th February 1952 (her Coronation took place on 2nd June 1953). greeted the Royal couple aboard the vessel. The Governor General then introduced them to the Prime Minister, who then introduced the members of Parliament and other dignitaries. HRH Prince Edward was invited to inspect a Guard of Honour, comprised of troops from the ABDF and the RPFAB. Upon conclusion of the inspection at a brief reception thereafter, the Royal couple were introduced to selected recipients of Commonwealth and National awards. The Royal couple were taken on a Museum. The Countess of Wessex was invited to plant a tree and then they travelled to the Interpretation Centre to receive a historical presentation. The Royal party returned to NelInn. Her Excellency the Governor General hosted a State Dinner at Mill Reef. Her Excellency presented an address to the nation and HRH message to Antigua and Barbuda. On day 2, HRH Sophie, the Countess of Wessex was taken to visit John Medical Centre and also visited the Princess Margaret School which is the first government secondary institution opened by Princess Margaret in 1955. She visited the Adele School, a school for children with special needs. Alternatively, Prince Edward visited the office of the Duke of Edinburgh Award programme, which is recognized as an outstanding programme for providing young people with the opportunity to develop self confidence, self reliance, leadership skills, and build all round character. HRH Prince Edward toured the Antigua Grammar school, the oldest secondary institution in Antigua and Barbuda founded in 1884 by a British national Rev. Samuel Edmund Branch as an Anglican Boarding School. Their Royal Anglican Cathedral, presently under renovation but originally consecrated in 1683 and was rebuilt in 1845 after several devastating earthquakes. Subsequent to a tour of that facility, they attend ed lunch at the prestigious Jumby Bay Resort. The Royal Party departed Antigua on 7th March. Page 5 (next page) show the programme of visits made by the Royal Couple. It should be noted that a number of activities will be conducted in Antigua and Barbuda in recognition of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations. These activities are planned to occur between February and June, 2012. * * * 22nd February 2012


5 Photos from the Royal Visit featured Her Excellency Dame Louise Lake Tack, GCMG, Governor General greeting the Dr The Hon Baldwin W Spencer, Prime Minister with Prince Edward


6 CMG For His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts, High Commissioner On March 22 nd H.E Dr Carl Roberts was joined by his wife Pauline, his two sons Jermaine and Kevin, and his daughter Chalene at Buckingham Palace to receive the award of CMG (Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of St Michael and St George) granted to him by Her Majesty the Queen in her New Years Honours List. The Honour was bestowed upon High Commissioner Roberts for the years of distinguished contribution to public service. When asked how he felt about being awarded the CMG, High Commendations of persons here and at home, I have been granted an honour this year. I am indeed humbled and graciously I have accepted. I have at the same time pledged to continue my service as a Christian assured in my conLater that evening High Commissioner Roberts was joined by family, friends and colleagues from several organisations, including the Hornsey Moravian Church, Rotary Club of London, the Commonwealth Secretariat, the Royal Commonwealth Society, the Commonwealth Foundation and the Antigua and Barbuda National Association, to celebrate the momentous occasion. Also present were the Lord Mayor of Westminster, the Mayor of London Borough of Waltham Forest (with which Antigua and Barbuda is twinned), and the Deputy Mayor of Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea along with Lord and Lady Tunnicliffe, Lord David Hunt of Wirral, Dr Danny Sriskandarajah, Director of the RCS and Mrs Sriskandarajah and Mr Vijay Krishnavayan, Director of Commonwealth Foundation. High Commissioner for the Bahamas, Mr Paul Farquharson (as Master of Ceremony), High Commissioner for St Lucia H.E. Mr Eldridge Stephens, Mr Charles Gray, Marshal of the Diplomatic Corps, Major David Rankin Hunt, Administrator of the Royal Collection and Mrs Mmasekgoa Masire Mwamba, Deputy Secretary General Commonwealth Secretariat were among several who spoke in congratulations to Dr Roberts. reached and kept, were not obtained by sudden flight. But they, while their companions slept, were toiling upwho would give an ear and word of wisdom when it was asked of him. The effect of this can be seen through the H.E. Dr Roberts and the rest of his family would like to take the opportunity to express their heartfelt thanks for the warm wishes of welcome and congratulations received from members of the Antiguan and Barbudan and Caribbean community worldwide. Pictured Above: His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts CMG, and Mrs Pauline Roberts at the entrance of Buckingham Palace after CMG Investiture


7 His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts CMG, High Commissioner addresses Antigua and Barbuda Nationals at a meeting on Sunday 12th February 2012 The Ordinary General Meeting (OGM) of the Antigua and Barbuda National Association (London) (ABNA) was held at Nesbitt House Community Hall in London. The meeting was chaired by Mr Everton George, President of ABNA who invited His Excellency Dr Carl Roberts, High Commissioner to speak to members on various issues in Antigua and Barbuda and provide an update on projects etc. Mrs Pauline Roberts and Mrs Althea Vanderpoole Banahene, Minister Counsellor at the High Commission also attended the meeting. United Kingdom, the sewage system, investment opportunities, the criteria for voting as a citizen and resident in the UK and a national of Antigua and Barbuda (dual nationality). Presentations were made by Mr John Prince an Antiguan national, retired Headteacher and one of the founding tary, ABNA led a lively debate on whether nationals who are also nationals of the UK had a right to vote in AntiCommonwealth Day Theme: Connecting Cultures at Westminster Abbey on Monday 12th March 2012 at 3.00pm Frank, a student volunteer (of Barbudan descent) at the High My Commonwealth Day by Asha Frank wealth Day. I met people from Tonga, Belize, The Congo, Mauritius, Triniknow much about. Everyone was very excited to get dressed up in their National Dresses and it was amazing to see the traditional clothing, particularly the Canadian representative in her Native American ensemble. Although some of the hotter countries including myself would have preferred to be wearing our national dresses in our home countries. One of the most exciting times during the day was at lunch when we all got together and debated about music, literature and politics. Pakistan even declared their love for dancehall music to mine, Trinidad Our performance after lunch was welcomed with a mix of nerves and excitement. We lined up outside holding our flags proudly to a large crowd of people and paparazzi waiting expectantly for the Queen. Many people came over to take pictures with us all, Jamaica being very popular. What the Commonwealth Day highlighted to me is how important it is to realise that people are people despite their ethnicity, cultural traditions and different backgrounds. It was very satisfying to see how united and receiving everyone was towards one another. * * * Seen above: His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts, CMG, High Commissioner with Flag bearer, Miss Asha Frank, volunteer working at the High Commission His Excellency Dr Carl Roberts CMG and Mrs Roberts attended the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey


8 Her Majesty The Queen has been graciously pleased to give orders for the following appointments (Civil Division ) in the New Years Honours List: * * * His Excellency Dr Carl B W Roberts Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) (For Public Service) * * * Winston Anthony Bailey, Esquire Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) (for Service to Music) * * * Vaughn Walter Esquire Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) (For Services to Cultural Arts) * * * (Extracted from Antigua and Barbuda Official Gazette dated 30th December 2011) The Investiture Ceremony Mr Vaughn Walter MBE at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday 29th February 2012 When asked how he felt about receiving an MBE in Mr Walter stated that he was humbled and honoured to be recognised for the hard work and dedication over the years in making Antigua and Barbuda a cultural icon in the Caribbean. Further, to be given the opportunity to meet His Royal Highness Prince Charles and walk through the corridors of history in Buckingham Palace made the occasion even more memorable. He thanked Her Excellency Dame Louise Lake Tack DCN, DStJ, the Governor General for nominating him. * * * Seen above is Mr Vaughn Walter MBE holding his MBE medal on the steps of Buckingham Palace after the Investiture Ceremony


9 New Youth Group formed A newly formed group will be lobbyyouth to seek alternate forms of conflict resolution other than violence. New Creations a group formed after the November 4 cutlass brawl at Ottos Comprehensive School, will be launching a series of proschool students. The initiative, which begins with a school tour on January 12, is designed to encourage young individuals to pursue excellence in school and aspire to become community leaders. Founder of the non profit organisation Arianne Hill said it is the hope lives and make them brand new sent an alternative option, another voice, because they have a lot of all of all the negatives, there is something else that they can choose to She explained that the organisation is seeking to restore societal values tional programmes which include an inspirational message by motivational speaker Carrol Richards, who has worked with Campus Crusade for Christ and Campus Ministry Jamaica. A school competition, in which the youth will be challenged to do five good deeds, is also in the plan. choosing to do five things: submit to the teachers, treat them with respect, pay attention in class, hand over assignments in a timely manner and participate in the outreach proThe progress of the students will be monitored by volunteer teachers within the seven schools participating in the event. The most improved student will be nominated for an award to be given in the month of February. The final chapter of the initiative will be a concert in the month of March. The group has agreed to donate proceeds from this event to the Sunshine Home for Girls, the Good Shepherd Home, Boys Training School, the Inter school College and Christian Fellowship (ISCCF). 11th January 2012 Antigua moves to stem school violence The DARE programme provides the youth with skills to avoid involvement in drugs, gangs, and violence. An upsurge in violence among students has prompted authorities to move toward the implementation of the Cadet Core programme from September and expand an anti drug programme in schools. The police will also continue monitoring and patrolling schools and conduct regular random searches, the Ministry of National Security said in a statement. The decisions were taken at a meeting between the Ministers of National Security and Education, and representatives of the Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force and the Royal Police Force. In addition, Education Minister Dr Jacqui Quinn Leandro said recomfew for children in school uniforms, how the ministry will incorporate the Defence Force and the police in the security of our school plant, how we are going to professionalise the private security system, It was agreed that a joint committee would be formed to assist with the implementation of the Cadet Core programme at the start of the 2012 academic year, while the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) Programme will be expanded to include six secondary schools in its first phase, the released stated. The DARE programme provides the youth with skills to avoid involvement in drugs, gangs, and violence. Minister Quinn would be critical to the success to the initiatives. Did you know that Antigua and Barbuda plans to participate in the London 2012 Olympics? More details to follow .


10 Sir Viv honoured end Sir Vivian Richards was honoured with a week of activities to mark his 60th birthday which fell on 7th March. The week long festivities began March 3 with the Breast Friends Antigua walk from the historical Antigua Recreation Grounds (ARG), where Sir Viv made the fastest Test century to Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Grounds. The highlight of the week was the and Barbudans and fans across the globe were to wear pink and/or purchase one of the specially commisshirts that were available from February 27. All proceeds raised will go to Breast Friends Antigua. Sir Viv is very humbled to be associated with such an inspirational organi s a t i o n o n s u c h a s p e c i a l o c c a s i o n H e strived to do good for my community and if we can raise monies and create greater awareness for a disease that affects most of us, in some way, then it will make my birthday even more On March 7, an Invitational Golf Tournament at Cedar Valley Golf Club featured three of the four other living cricketing knights Sir Garfield Sobers, Sir Ian Botham and Sir Richard Hadley. The other knight, Sir Everton Weekes, was in Antigua for the week of activities that will also include a joint church service with Sir McLean Emmanuel, who celebrated 50 years as a calypsonian. An official banquet hosted by the government of Antigua and Barbuda; as well as a lecture featuring cricket historian Sir Hilary Beckles, Reverend Wes Hall and local pundits, along with a classic sports day at ARG, featuring the two other sports in which Sir Viv represented his country, cricket and football. Overseas interests may purchase T shirts via the website www.sirvivianrichards.com. * * 22nd February 2012 Chinese Government Hands Over Multi Million Dollar Community Centre to Barbuda Prime Minister the Hon. W. Baldwin Spencer and Chinese Ambassador to Antigua and Barbuda His Excellency Mr. Liu Hanming on signed the Handover Certificates signifying the turning over of a multi million dollar community centre to the people of Barbuda. The 3.1 Million EC dollar facility built by the Chinese and donated to Barbuda features a library, office facilities, a gym, Information Technology Centre, a meeting hall and classroom spaces. Prime Minister the Hon. Baldwin Spencer who spoke at the Official Opening Ceremony said that the relationship between Antigua and Barbuda is at its highest in the 28 year relations between both countries. * * * 20th January 2012 * * * Barbudan teachers receive free laptops All teachers at schools in Barbuda have received a free laptop computer courtesy of LIME, a partnership between the UPP Government and Cable and Wireless. The teachers were presented with their personal computer in a ceremony in Barbuda attended by Minister of State Edmund Mansoor and members of the Barbuda Council


11 Carlos 110 years on 23rd January 2012 celebrated her 110th birthday at Fiennes Institute. Before the ceremony got underway, a jovial and still cognitive Carlos entertained the gathering by dancing for her guests Governor General Dame Louise Lake Tack, Minister of Health Willmoth Daniel, Brenda Thomas Odlum, Director of the Community Development Division, other invited guests, friends and family. said he is hoping to have a policy formulated that will see centenarians celebrated daily and that they are cared for round the clock in government problem with Fiennes, I think the way in which we treat our senior citizens, especially someone who is a centenarian, says a lot about us. Better care should be taken of those individuals and I hope that there is some way that the government can provide a reward for those individuals who look after their loved ones Daniel said. Carlos lived in Freetown Village her entire life. She has never had children nor has she ever been married. She was moved to Fiennes Institute in June 2009. She is hearing impaired and has almost no sight. Freetown has produced four persons who have attained 100 years. Thomas Odlum said she is indeed back, but apart from that she is good. She was even dancing that morning and she was the one who chose the two songs we sang for her Blessed Assurance and To God Thomas Odlum said. Sister Edwards, prominent in Freetown, was on hand to give her support. REMINDER NOTICE THE DEADLINE TO RENEW/EXCHANGE NON MACHINE READABLE PASSPORTS HAS BEEN PLEASE APPLY AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE TO OBTAIN A NEW CARIBBEAN COMMUNTITY ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA MACHINE READABLE PASSPORT New Style Caribbean Community Antigua and Barbuda Passport Representation of the People (Amendment) Act No. 17 of 2001 Did you know that to qualify to vote in the General Elections in Antigua and Barbuda you have to be a citizen of Antigua and Barbuda, 18 years old and over and resident in the Constituency for at least one month prior to registering (to vote)? To All Antiguans and Barbudans and Friends of Antigua and Barbuda Please join us For a Service of Thanksgiving To Celebrate the 45th Anniversary of Antigua and Barbuda National Association London (ABNA) Sunday 24th June 2012 at 3.00pm N16 9ES DIARY DATE DIARY DATE


12 Youth Spotlight Michael Joseph read during the 2011 National Youth Awards, it was evident this was a young man who had embraced wholeheartedly the spirit of volunteerism. The 23 year old, recently elected to the Red Cross and Red Youth Commission, has been busy. regional and international forums. These include the Caribbean Youth Summit and Regional Youth Forum the latter resulting in the formation of the Caribbean Red Cross Youth co ordinator; the Inter American Conference, International Conference in Geneva, Youth on the Move summit in Italy, and One Young World Summit in Switzerland and his subsequent appointment as Ambassador of Antigua and Barbuda to One Young World. It includes, as well, planning and hosting the 2nd Annual Caribbean Youth Summit in Antigua and Barbuda, participation in other regional camps and trainings too numerous to mention sometimes as participant, sometimes as facilitator. No surprise then that Joseph has assumed, among other roles, the role of Youth Director of the Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross Society with responsibility for volunteer management and volunteer development. Other projects of note with which Club 25 blood donation programme which he plans to re launch in March, the idea being to attract not one off donors but people who will commit to giving on a semi regular basis; the Readiness to Respond project to train communities in disaster preparedness; and the National Intervention Team which co ordinates with local and regional relief bodies. he was selected by the Pan American Disaster Relief Unit as project coordinator for delivery of aid to 135 fami l i e s a f t e r H u r r i c a n e E a r l i n 2 0 1 0 I n 2011, Joseph became a member of Global Changemakers International, a British Council programme to encourage youth leaders to work to bring about positive change; and of Global Dignity, an NGO which advocates dignity for all human life. addition to his ongoing pharmacological studies with the University of the West Indies and his work at the Medi c a l B e n e f i t s S c h e m e P h a r m a c y a n d the City Store Pharmacy. Two questions come to mind: what drives him and how does he manage the balancing act. It all started in primary school, he explained. He was a fifth grade student at Five Islands School when a Red Cross volunteer visited and spoke to the school. Joseph said. Maybe it was the big brother in him; he has five younger siblings and feels keenly to this day the desire to be a good example to them. eration people who are younger Maybe it was just fun, initially; learning first aid, doing craft projects. Or it could be, as he said, that it just volvement in Red Cross gave him a sense of purpose during that awkward transition stage that teens go through, that period where with nothing to hold onto they can go astray. Lucky for him, there was continuity from Five Islands to Ottos Comprehensive, where Red Cross also had a presence. By fourth form, he had transitioned, on advice of a teacher, to more direct involvement with the Red Cross. The fact that he hails from a single an economically depressed community where some of his peers found other less luminous groups to identify with cannot be taken lightly as well. In fact, it lit a fire under him. This was my motivation for personal himself that when you persist, there is no limit to what you can achieve. ment with Red Cross as well, that poverty is relative. He told a story of walking the streets in Ecuador, where he was participating in a Red Cross function, and being confronted with abject poverty, a child as young as three going through the people who did have it worse, there was work to be done. If he feels any somehow maintaining a personal life, with sacrifice and a willingness to delegate always time and always a are dealt bad hands in life and it give back. (In the end) what was the point of you living if you helped no Michael Joseph was a past recipient of


13 Literacy takes centre stage overall development was re emphasised during the opening of the fourth annual National Literacy Festival which opened at the multipurpose Cultural Centre. The event, which formed part of the activities celebrating Education Week 2012, drew participants from various schools on the island and a wide cross section of exhibitors. Governor General Dame Louise Lake Tack, who declared the event open, encouraged parents to play a more integral role in the developbackground. Lake Tack said events such as the festival, which seek to harness the intellectual skills of the nation, should also be supported by the parents. se days. Only the very best will survive and we need that sort of enShe said when students fail, the onus is on the parents to find out their weak areas and work with them to make improvements. Chairperson of the Festival Commitability to read and write can serve as a deterrent to negative behaviour. environment and inform our decision making process so that we can determine our course of action, the ability to read and write connects us to a whole new world of knowledge, experience illumination and enrichment that we believe every boy and Throughout the exhibition, there was arts and craft from various schools. A standout of the many displays in the exhibition areas was one set by Potters Primary School. Another was the puppet presentations depicted by puppetry. The students were exposed to activities which ranged from story telling, to impromptu reading, and dyslexia awareness, to public speaking. The public speaking competition saw competitors from eight secondary schools deliberating on many topics, to include: young offenders should be severely punished; the negative use of cell phones is harmful to society; a minimal school fee should be paid in public schools; and extending the school day for the secondary schools performance. The event was held under the theme the gateway to positive * * 8th February 2012 Education focus on special needs children The Ministry of Education is bolstering efforts to ensure that more attention and resources are channelled towards children with special needs. In November last year it established a Special Education Council (SEC) as mandated by the Education Act, 2008, to see to a number of initiatives for special needs students. The Special Education Council was envisaged as a mechanism to lend support to the already established Adele School for Special Children, the School for the Deaf and the School for the Blind. On 8th February, the Council hosted a special educational needs seminar aimed at creating a better level of awareness among educators on how best to deal with special needs children. Declaring the one day workshop open, Minister of Education, Youth, Sports & Gender Affairs Dr Jacqui Quinn Leandro said special education will be a major priority in 2012. ry child into the same pot as one homogenous group, when they are actually a rich and diverse mlange of varying abilities, strengths, weakover decades has failed too many, and this seminar is an attempt to Quinn Leandro said special needs children are constantly misdiagnosed and misunderstood, and while the aim of the Special Education Council is to sensitise the public at large about special needs, it must first begin with educators, who should be aware of types of learning challenges and then train their counterparts, all in an effort to reach out to those special needs students. The first undertaking of the SEC was the establishment of the National Special Education Diagnostic Centre, which is to be housed in a building on Nugent Avenue where students will be screened and diagnosed for any existing special needs and placed within the education system according to their abilities. An education officer will also be appointed solely to ensure that students with special needs get the attention they deserve efforts in this regard. for both teachers and students over minister said. An Antiguan in Canada; Dr Llewellyn Joseph, a Psychiatrist and Special Needs Specialist in Child and Adolescent Mental Health at the Southlake Regional Health Centre, will also be offering additional training to Special Needs teachers in the first quarter of 2012. The seminar was held as part of the activities for Education week, which ran from February 3 to 11. * * * 8th February 2012


14 Caricom looks to revamp operations A preliminary report detailing plans to revamp the operations of the Caricom Secretariat has received the nod of approval from the counordinator, Ambassador Dr Clarence Henry. The findings of the report were presented by a consultant at the just concluded 29th Meeting of the Community Council of Ministers, the second highest organ of Caricom. Ambassador Henry noted, however, more time would have to be spent looking at the document in its entirety. the establishment of at least two agencies within the secretariat, which hopefully will improve its implementation and increase its effectiveness in terms of the Caricom More details will be released when the Caribbean Council of Ministers meet, the trade co ordinator said. Ambassador Henry added that the review comes at a pivotal moment in the life of Caricom which will give the ministers time to reflect on its operation and make changes where necessary. Coming out of the meeting was the offer by Suriname to place its resources at the disposal of Caricom countries. It is rooted in the notion that the region must effectively search for alternatives to increase its own capacity and self sufficiency by creating economic joint ventures for the establishment of Caricom enterprises. tor can play a part in sharing its wealth. It is something equivalent to the Jagdeo initiative in Guyana where a certain portion of its agriculture lands are being given to the private sector. It is a novel idea, one that was welcomed and it will be further discussed by a working group that was established at the A working group was established to look at issues pertaining to associate membership of Caricom. The council appointed St Lucia to head the working group. The other members are Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Guyana, Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago. * * 9th February 2012 OECS negotiating with Canada for increased market access for service industries Persons in the transportation, tourism, entertainment and other aspects of the services industry are among those likely to gain significant benefits if a new trade in services agreement is finalised between OECS member states and Canada. OECS member states along with others in Caricom are seeking to increase market opportunities in Canada for persons in the services industry as well as manufacturers and farmers. Head of the OECS Trade Policy Unit Virginia Paul said the secretariat is attempting to secure increased and for people in the trade industry, so that it would be easier for them to trade in whatever field or endeavour they are involved. tiations providing increased marketing opportunities for people in the The Castries based OECS Secretariat said negotiations with Canada towards a new services in trade agreement is among several engagements of a packed agenda of the secretariat trade policy unit for the year 2012. Paul indicated that the work of the trade policy is very dynamic and the secretariat this year is expecting to see increased activities in their negotiations with Canada in particular. phase of the CSME trade and competitiveness project where we will be continuing work to assist our member states to implement their obligations under the Caricom single market and economy which is expected Paul said. The OECS trade policy unit also collaborates with other sections of the OECS secretariat such as the Regional Integration Unit, the Geneva mission as well as agencies such as the Caricom secretariat and the World Trade Organisation. * * * 20th February 2012 The Rotary Club of Antigua is partnering with the Belleview Breakfast Rotary Club of Washington The Belleview Breakfast Rotary Club, in collaboration with the Community Development Division in the Ministry of Social Transformation, has launched a sewing project at Greenwhere individuals will learn the basics of sewing. Classes began with instructor Jan Martinka, wife of the course instructor said each sewing machine is equipped with a DVD and a book on the basics of sewing. Each participant was also provided with a sewing kit. According to President of the GreenCatherine Davis, the classes are not only for residents of the Grays/Green community but anyone who is interested. President of Rotary Club of Antigua Denise Armstrong said her organisation looks forward to continue working with Belleview Breakfast Rotary Club. President Martinka is hoping that at the end of the classes participants will be able to pass their knowledge on to others. 21st February 2012


15 CARICOM head makes plea for equal rights for women Secretary General says the development of rural women in the Caribbean threatened by gender based violence. Friday March 9, 2012 The CARICOM Secretariat will soon publish the findings of the report Youth, Masculinities and Violence in the Caribbean. This was disclosed by CARICOM Secretary General, Irwin LaRocque during his message to mark Internatheme Empower Rural Women End Hunger and Poverty, yesterday. The report was prepared by CARICOM Advocate for Gender Justice, Dr. Rosina Wiltshire, who has co ordinated research in several Member States to gather the data. LaRocque said the development of rural women in the Caribbean was threatened by gender based vioengage young women and men, girls and boys in advancing gender equality and eliminating and preventing all forms of violence against women He added that rural women constituted one ulation, and stressed that if they were granted equal access to productive resources, agricultural yields, the number of chronically hungry people could be reduced between 100 and 150 million. The Secretary General said rural women accounted for a great portion of the agricultural labour force, and produced the majority of the food grown. He added the Secretariat also launched its public campaign products produced during a workshop in Suriname last year. That will see 15 artists from Belize, Guyana and Suriname blending their voices to the global campaign led by the United Nations Secretary General to end violence against women. nouncements, jingles, a calypso and a documentary on sexual, psychological and physical violence and we are pleased to share these with Member noting the project was sponsored by UN Women. Common economic zone approved for ALBA countries A common economic zone for the member countries of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our Americas (ALBA) was approved by the presidents attending the XI Summit of that block. With the Treaty (Eco ALBA), agreed by Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica and St Vincent and the Grenadines, trade for the development of the integration mechanism will be promoted. The common economic space will have a bank to which they agreed to earmark one per cent of the international reserves of each member nation of ALBA. With that multilateral fund, the use of a single currency by the System of Regional Compensation (Sucre) will be possible, agreed the dignitaries who passed the new structure. According to Telesur, the unanimous approval of the common economic area was announced by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who noted the need for progress in financing and production within ALBA. Cuban President Raul Castro said economic aspect as the conditions are optimal to stimulate the integration of the region. This is a union of independent nations and a strategy of fair and equitable development for our people and not for foreign capital, said the Cuban head of state. * * * 6th February 2012 Useful Telephone Numbers in Antigua and Barbuda Registrar of Births, Marriages, Deaths 001 268 462 3725 Land Registry 001 268 462 3745 0r 562 3943 or 562 3894


16 New comptroller promises different approach The man chosen to be the next comptroller of Customs has promised to change the adversarial relations which exist between the division and the people who do business there. Raju Baddhu said the culture under his watch will be what is in the best interest of the people. unreasonable and unwarranted aggression towards our importers and business people. I have a feeling that we have forgotten the fact that ence of Customs Department itself. I shall be reaching out to our clients and work with their problems and to win back their confidence and facilitate productive trade in the dhu said in accepting the position. The comptroller said it is his belief people, their aspirations, emotions and needs by way of establishing equitable systems of communication, consultation and commitment the revenue will flow automatically Baddhu replaces Philmore Williams who retired from the position after two years. The new post holder said he will be meeting with the other law enforcement agencies like police, ONDCP, Immigration, Inland Revenue and other government departments to forge a co operative network to strengthen the fiscal and border security and to synergise the Customs operations. Baddhu, who has been working here for the past 10 years, said he is familiar with the importation practices of business people and he is prepared for corrective action for those which need immediate action. The new Customs chief however believes that customs practices in the more developed countries can not be applied here. principles applied in developed economies like Canada and the UK will be an abject failure here and we need homegrown strategies to guide us through these difficult times. What we need are not text book solutions but out of box solutions that will safeguard the economic sovereignty of Antigua and * * * 6th February 2012 Antiguan farmers to export to the UK Farmers in Antigua and Barbuda can look forward to more of their crops being exported. Caudley George, who recently visited the United Kingdom, has been meeting with leading fresh produce importers of Caribbean food, some of whom want to partner with Antigua and Barbuda farmers. Samples of yam, season peppers, pumpkin, sorrel and okra were recently taken to the UK as part of the drive to increase the farmsecurity as well as to increase the import substitution initiative and buy local campaign. Sweet potatoes, okra, mango and yam are amongst the most sought after items. Breadfruit, soursop, hot peppers, pumpkin and season peppers are also highly required within the UK market. The demand has come about because of the awareness of the benefit that can be derived from fruits and vegetables from the region as well as the health giving properties found in them. start for the year for our farmers, the agriculture sector and the said. It is expected that some exports will commence as early as March with mangoes as soon as the season starts. Tree ripened mangoes are what is most required from the various supermarkets. George is confident that the visit will be beneficial if farmers can sit down together and work out the details of a potentially successful programme that will see the increase of production more than ten fold. A follow up visit some time in March is envisaged. This is to further cement any arrangements made and to finalise plans for the logistics. Talks with Virgin Cargo and British Airways Cargo are underway to ensure a smooth operation once everything is in place. * * * 17th January 2012


17 Antigua does well at Agri fest The Antigua and Barbuda delegation that participated in the 41st Annual Agri Fest Exhibition held in St Croix held its own, with the main booth placing second behind winner Nevis, and young farmer Twin I Payne placing third in his category. The Agriculture and Food Fair in the US Virgin Island is where agriculture, arts and craft of the region come together for a grand showcase. For five consecutive years, Antigua and Barbuda outshine other countries, walking home with the overall winnings and in 2011, history was made est farmers, emerged second behind Communications Co ordinator for the Ministry of Agriculture Onika Campbell commended Payne for his effort and encouraged other young farmers to take the initiative to market their skills and products. took it on his own to come down theme Youth in Agriculture Growing our Future it is very fitting and it is a very sustainable way to go in developing She urged others to be active in the agricultural sector and join the effort to achieve national food security. A team comprising officials from the Ministry of Agriculture, Central Marketing Corporation (CMC), Art and Craft, Confectionary, Agro processors, Agro suppliers and producers went to St Croix to participate in the annual event. on the exposure of authentic Antiguan goods and services geared towards the development of the This is a Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Housing & the Environment initiative, in collaboration with CMC. The entire team is expected to return on 21st February. UK pledges to assist Caribbean with crime Crime, security and drug trafficking in the Caribbean region were high on the agenda of the recently held 7th UK Caribbean Forum in Grenada which Minister of National Security, Dr Errol Cort in his capacity as Chair of the Council of Ministers responsible for National Security and Law Enforcement (CONSLE) co chaired. Dr The Hon. Baldwin W Spencer, Prime Minister and His Excellency Dr Carl Roberts, High Commissioner attended the meeting. James Brokenshire, minister for Crime and Security, UK Home Office assisted him. Commenting on the outcome of the meeting, the national security minister said the UK authorities made commitments to provide continued assistance to the Caribbean in dealing with these imperative matters. transnational nature of many of the criminal activities taking place in the region and hence I think it was a bit unprecedented. The UK invited the US ambassador, who is based in Guyana, to be a part of that meeting because you would recall that the Caribbean has this initiative with the United States which is called the Dr Cort said. He noted these entities will be collaborating together to avoid duplication of efforts. The establishment of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is also in the cards for the regional grouping on the intelligence front. The MOU will be signed between the intelligence office of the CONSLE and their UK counterparts through the Regional Intelligence Fusion Center (RIFC) which is a sub agency of Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), based in Trinidad & Tobago. are now following up in terms of added. The meeting held under the theme rounding the four key priority areas of training, information and intelligence sharing, maritime co operation and border security. These discussions were aimed at reinforcing the co operation between the parties and enhancing their mutual security. The parties have also agreed to implement a plan of action based on the key priorities. The UK/Caribbean forum was initiated in 1998 and the biennial forum seeks to address co operation in areas of external trade and negotiations as well as in the areas of social development such as education, human resource development and security * * * 6th February 2012 To Our Readers The next issue of the newsletter will cover the period April and May So look out for it in mid June


18 Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority Launch Leap Year Proposal Promotion The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism launched an online and social media campaign offering females that propose to their partners Leap Day, 29 February 2012, the chance to win a honeymoon in Antigua. The campaign highlighted the twin as a dream wedding and honeymoon destination by targeting females. Mr P Hilary Modeste, UK & Europe Director, Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, said: days women can propose to their beaus any time they like, however the tradition remains that on 29 February, women can take the proposal initiative. not to mention fun, online campaign to reach our key audience of females who we know tend to be the honeymoon decision maker. We hope women will leap at the chance Research shows that women are overwhelmingly the honeymoon choice decision maker. Women also spend 35% more time on social networks than men and drive 70% of consumer spending. Activity surrounding the campaign, focused on a competition which went live on Leap Day, 29 February 2012, giving ladies that pop the question the chance to win a seven night all inclusive honeymoon at Sugar Ridge Resort. To qualify for the competition, entrants were required to upload a short video of their Leap Day proposal on to YouTube. The best five videos were shortlisted for a public vote with the finalists encouraged to share their video on social networking sites to garner maximum votes. Videos are viewable on the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Facebook site and was promoted via @antiguabarbuda on Twitter with the hashtag #AntiguaBarbudaProposal. Full terms and conditions are available at: www.VisitAntiguaBarbuda.co.uk * * * Cooperative egg farm opens The Barbuda Farmers Co operative recently opened their egg farm. The business presently consist of 100 juvenile chickens which after about six months will produce one egg per day each. The owners intend to expand the project over the next two years in order that the importing of eggs from Antigua and the USA to Barbuda is vastly reduced and we can all benefit from fresh eggs every day. German TV to film on Barbuda ARD German TV is producing a special two part documentary about the Caribbean which will air in prime time during the Christmas holidays in Germany. Filming in the Eastern Caribbean islands is planned during May or June, journeying through the islands of Antigua, Dominica and Montserrat after visits to Jamaica, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic. The producer, Annemarie Kammerlander, particularly hopes to talk to Barbudan women about life on the island. www.barbudaful.net A website with information just about Barbuda


19 Youth canvassed to join A call has been issued for young people to get involved in a fledgling bean, a project of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It is being advertised as an opportunity for leaders of tomorrow to ticipate in decision making in their nect with other youth and engage in conversations about key issues (and) communicate positions and alternatives to decision makers as It will be a youth driven initiative, with 14 selectees first meeting face to face in Barbados, and going on to develop a work plan that will then guide their subsequent online raise awareness among Caribbean youth and advocate for policy deOpportunities emanating from this, reportedly, will include linkages to international opportunities and exchanges such as UNDP specialised and governance training. * * 9th February 2012 A Delicious Design is the Winning Ingredient flies the flag for Antigua and Barbuda at the 17 th International Gourmand Awards Les Folies Bergre, Paris, France Gourmand Awards, Paris Winning Cookbook Design in the World Tablemanners: A Culinary Review of Hospitality in Antigua and Barbuda Authors Gulliver Johnson and Janie Conley Johnson. Editor Madeleine Jardim McComas, Graphic Designer Takumi Media Category: Best Cookbook Design in the World 2011 Tablemanners: A Culinary Review of Hospitality in Antigua and Barbuda, has won First (1st) Prize in the category of Best Publisher and Best Design for 2011 by the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards organization. The award was announced at the 17th International Gourmand World Cookbook Awards ceremony at Les Folies Bergere theatre in Paris, France on March 6, 2012. TABLEMANNERS was authored and published by Gulliver Johnson and Janie Conley Johnson, edited by Madeleine Jardim McComas, and graphic design was by Takumi Media. The Gourmand World Cookbook Awards was established by Edouard Cointreau in 1995, and is an annual event of great prestige and honour in the international world of food and wine. The Cointreau family has been influential in this elite world for many generations. Edouard is descended on his faproduce Cointreau liqueur, and on my Martin and Frapin Cognacs. Edouard is President of the Paris Cookbook Fair, President of the World Association of Food TV and President of Honour of China Food Television. As Edouard says: matter who they are, all winners do share one aspect. You can feel the same spirit in a good cookbook or wine book as you do in good literature. The author shines through. In fiction it is usually a single author while in most cookbooks or wine books the final result is very much a * * * 6th March 2012 stories from Barbuda By Claire Frank winning entries. It was written for children of mixed heritage everywhere and is essential reading for parents and children of Caribbean heritage. The stories are all set on the beautiful island of Barbuda and if you have never been, you will soon want to go. The anthology is a limited edition and is available at lulu.com


20 Antigua and Barbuda High Commission, 2nd Floor 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP,Tel: 020 72580070,Fax: 020 72587486, enquiri es@ antigua barbuda.com Scholarships offered in disaster risk management to the region Designed to help countries better understand natural hazards, catastrophe risk and the potential impact of climate change. GEORGE TOWN, CAYMAN ISLANDS Caribbean residents now have the opportunity to become well versed in the issues that affect them as it relates to disaster risk management. That is because the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facili t y C C R I F ) h a s l a u n c h e d a n E x t r a Regional Scholarship programme for Caribbean nationals, which start from the 2012 to 2013 academic year. Through this programme, three scholarships, totaling US$140,000, will be awarded to citizens in member states to allow them to gain a Maters or MBA degree through a United Kingdom, United States or Canadian university in related areas. Eligible programmes of study at the Maters level include Disaster Risk Management, Property or Casualty Insurance, Disaster Management, Meteorology or Climate Change and Engineering. The Extra Regional scholarship Technical Assistance programme which was designed to help countries in the region deepen their understanding of natural hazards, catastrophe risk and the potential impact of climate change. It is anticipated that a cadre of professionals will be created through the programme, who will be later tasked with the responsibility of developing national and regional strategies to improve disaster risk management in their respective countries, and increase climate change resilience. The CCRIF also provides funding for the CCRIF University of the West Indies Scholarship programme for both undergraduate and postgraduate students. It also provides a professional development grant support programme for staff in key Caribbean regional and national institutions. Citizens of the 16 CCRIF member countries are eligible for the scholarship. 27th February 2012 * * * Minister mulls plans with security forces Minister of National Security Dr Errol Cort talks strategy with the security forces. An intelligence led crime fighting strategy, violence in schools and gender based crime were high on the agenda when Minister of National Security Dr Errol Cort met with the hierarchy of the police and defence forces yesterday. Dr Cort commended the security forces, which have been conducting joint operations, for their efforts in 2011. solve serious crime in the counAn evaluation of the current crime prevention plans and strate g i e s f o r t h e n a t i o n w a s c o n d u c ted with discussions on the successes and areas in need of improvement. fighting should continue to be intelligence led with an emphasis on community policing in conjunction with other methods a press release read. A decision arising from the meeting includes crafting a joint strategic plan between the police and the defence force, setting parame t e r s f o r e a c h u n i t Community action teams will also be mobilised to go into high crime areas to work with residents to increase vigilance and curb crime. programmes across the country and establishing new programmes are high on the 2012 13th January 2012 ************