You are never too young or too old to get involved in contributing to the development of our culture and this was evident from the recently held Half Moon Fort Primary School ‘Culture Day.’ It is the hope that these festivities, held under the theme ‘Celebrating our Culture,’ will become more widespread throughout the schools, not only in Barbados but across the Caribbean.
Miss Stacia Bryan, Festival & Event Planner with the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) and the Producer of this year’s Junior Kadooment proffered that, “Barbados is more than just a latitude and longitude position on a map. As a people we are also known by our expression of language, our traditions, music, arts and crafts and festivals. Our culture is what makes us who we are and the earlier this is recognised the more efforts we can make as a community to differentiate us from other developing nations like ourselves. So why not start with our little ones?”
In her address, Miss Bryan also commended the efforts of the parents and teachers of the Half Moon Fort School community remarking that, “It is truly amazing and heartening to see this level of commitment to culture not only from the educators but also from the parents at this primary level.”
As the Crop Over season heats up, the NCF encourages parents and children to continue to celebrate our culture by participating in or showing support for some of the activities and events such as Junior Kadooment and the Junior Calypso Monarch Programme. The Foundation is proud to, alongside its sponsors, have been committed to these events for many years. The creativity in the designs of the costumes along with the composition and performance of the songs at this level gives you a true essence of ‘Barbadiana’ and a sense of pride that if this is continually nurtured the preservation of our heritage is in good hands.
Mrs. Andrea Wells, Chief Cultural Officer of the NCF remarked that after the Crop Over Festival is finished, the Foundation moves into NIFCA (the National Independence Festival of Creative Arts) and she encouraged the schools to also participate in this Festival thus ensuring the continued development of our culture.
Mrs. Wells added that with the growing interest in the Cultural Industries, the NCF advocates for children to be well-rounded and urges them to continue to focus not only on their academics, but also on the arts disciplines, recognising the increasing potential to cultivate a career in these fields. She noted that for example, great English students can make exceptional poets and song writers; and amazing music students can make top producers not only on the island but beyond if we consider the impact of the internet and its reach in this global community. This is also an avenue for children to reveal their hidden talents and discover themselves.
Encouraging children at a young age to appreciate and develop their culture will create a special love for and understanding of who they truly are and a desire to preserve our culture as they get older.
Submitted by our BCC Corporate Communications intern Shannon Gooding