Initiated in 1962, the Independence Celebrations were considered integral to national development as a way of giving Jamaicans a sense of who they are, and what their history and culture is all about.
Jamaica 50 broadened the concept of the Independence celebrations to a programme of activities which would also serve to catalyse positive national response towards developmental goals.
Customarily, the Independence Celebrations also recognise activities in our country’s history which must be taken into consideration.
For the Year 2014 they are:
I. The 180th anniversary of the Abolition of Slavery
II. The 70th anniversary of the New Constitution to end the Crown Colony status of Jamaica which among other things introduced Universal Adult Suffrage
III. The 100th anniversary of the Universal Negro Improvement Association-African Communities League (UNIA), conceptualised by the Right Excellent Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Jamaica’s first National Hero.
While commemorating our historic movement into Independence and celebrating our national achievements, the content and context of Emancipation and Independence 2014 must call global attention to our focus on the development and promotion of the Cultural and Creative Industries.
The programme of activities for Jamaica Festival 2014 will take into consideration the following:
✓ Focus on Brand Jamaica as pivotal to our success in global markets
✓ An expansion of activities to incorporate most areas of the Cultural and Creative Industries including literature, film, television, culinary arts and fashion
✓ Increased visibility for art, craft and museum displays through a mobile exhibition at unconventional spaces
✓ Increased focus on parish and community activities in order to widen the identification, development and showcasing of talent island wide
✓ Sustained enterprise growth through skills and production training
✓ Facilitation of creative market environments in order to secure feasible national and international partnerships
✓ Reinforcing critical national messages Jamaica Festival will enliven a sense of belonging to the nation and reinforce a sense of national responsibility.