Hurricane recovery: Children to benefit from OECS-UNICEF ‘Return to Happiness Programme’

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Tuesday, October 17, 2017 — 214 children from Barbuda received psycho social assistance, after the trauma of hurricane Irma, through the Return to Happiness Programme implemented from October 2-7 by 17 education specialists. The Saint Lucian delegation of volunteers, who successfully completed the first mission, will extend their operations to other affected countries.

The passage of two category 5 hurricanes resulted in major material damage in several countries of the region and also left significant psychological marks on the victims, which is more difficult to evaluate. Natural disasters of this magnitude often leave survivors suffering from trauma and, especially when children are affected, their emotional suffering needs to be given special attention.

As a result, the OECS Commission and UNICEF partnered to implement a psycho social programme dedicated to children between 5 to 12 years old: Return to Happiness Programme (RTH). The RTH methodology has been used worldwide in countries impacted by a human or natural catastrophe such as major armed conflicts or high magnitude earthquakes. Its goal is to support the recovery of young children by giving them opportunities to share their feelings.

A team of 17 education professionals trained in the Return to Happiness methodology have been sent from Saint Lucia to Antigua and Barbuda on a mission from October 2 to 5. These educators received logistical support from the OECS Commission to ensure air transportation and the necessary accommodations on the ground.

Read more at: Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States

CARDI taking action to help rebuild agriculture in Barbuda, Dominica

CARDI Executive Director, Mr. Barton Clarke speaks about reviving agriculture in Barbuda, Dominica from Caribbean Community on Vimeo.

As we observe World Food Day today, we tell you that the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) has already begun taking action to restore the recently battered agriculture sectors in Barbuda and Dominica.

And while he lamented the destruction of thriving sectors that was caused by monster storms, Hurricanes Irma and Maria, Executive Director of CARDI, Mr. Barton Clarke, said that agriculture in the two islands will flourish again.

He said that CARDI had participated in the initial assessments of the damage to the islands, and was now looking at what their needs are. He said that the regional institution will liaise with the Secretariat of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) which has been mobilising assistance in agriculture. In an interview with CARICOM Today on 5 October, ahead of the 71st Meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development on Agriculture at the CARICOM Secretariat, Mr. Clarke said that the Region had some internal capacity to assist immediately to plant short-term crops. (more…)

CARICOM and Commonwealth SGs hold talks

 

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CARICOM engagement with the Commonwealth Secretariat on the margins of the annual World Bank IMF meetings in Washington, Friday.

Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque (2nd left) is leading the CARICOM delegation and Commonwealth Secretary-General Baroness Patricia Scotland (directly opposite) is leading her team. Also on the CARICOM delegation are Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration Mr. Joseph Cox (left) and Director, Economic Policy and Development, Ms Evelyn Wayne (3rd left)

Statistics integral to Single ICT Space

Caribbean Statistics Day is commemorated every year on 15 October. However, this year, the celebration will be held within the region on Friday, 13 October 2017, under the theme: Improving the Lives of People – Advancing the Action Plan for Statistics in CARICOM.

Through the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) tools and applications, the collection, interpretation and dissemination of national and regional data has improved in the CARICOM Region. In the development of the CARICOM Single ICT Space, ICT Statistics play a significant role in the environmental assessment to determine the gaps that exists in Member States. ICT statistics will also help to determine the overall success rate of the Single ICT Space through the use of monitoring tools.

The Secretariat joins with the rest of the Caribbean in celebrating Caribbean Statistics Day. We salute the Regional Statistics Programme at the CARICOM Secretariat and congratulate all the Statisticians in the Region, those who work in the National Statistics Office (NSO) and those who contribute in some way to the collection, verification and interpretation of data in the Member States.

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Vice Chancellor calls for reparation payment to descendants of slaves

Vice Chancellor, University of the West Indies, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, speaking on the topic ‘Faked Emancipation, Insincere Independence, Reparatory Justice: A 21st Century Paradigm for Economic Growth’ at a symposium held at the Mona Visitors’ Lodge, University of the West Indies, on October 11.
“Britain needs to be brought to the table to discuss the process of reparation, and if we can take this conversation to the higher level and make these demands… then these should become the basis of a summit.” – Professor Hilary Beckles
Vice Chancellor, University of the West Indies, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, has renewed the call for reparations valuing £76 billion be paid to the descendants of enslaved people of the Caribbean by former European slave-trading nation, Britain.

“The £20 million that they paid to the slave owners should have been paid to the enslaved. We have to make a claim to that money. We have an entitlement to that £20 million that was paid in 1834 (which) today values £76 billion,” he said.

Professor Beckles made the call while speaking on the topic ‘Faked Emancipation, Insincere Independence, Reparatory Justice: A 21st Century Paradigm for Economic Growth’ at a symposium held at the Mona Visitors’ Lodge, University of the West Indies, on October 11.

The Professor, who is also Chair of the CARICOM Reparation Commission, further suggested that the Caribbean’s bilateral debt should be offset against the £76 billion.

Read more at: Jamaica Information Service