Jamaica's High Commissioner to Canada, Her Excellency Sheila Sealy Monteith, has called on Jamaicans in Canada to start planning events to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Jamaica's Independence in 2012.
Speaking recently with Jamaicans living in Montreal, the High Commissioner urged them to put in place an organising committee to lead the planning and implementation of the activities “to mark the occasion appropriately and with dignity, showcasing some of the best of our country”.
She said the activities being planned should have broad representation, reflecting the diversity in age, gender and experience of Jamaicans living in Montreal and should have “a legacy impact” that will last long after the 50th anniversary celebrations, to benefit future generations.
“Some suggestions include monuments, academic work, contribution to education through scholarships and institutional support,” she said.
The High Commissioner noted that several committees have already been set up or are in the process of being formed in Toronto, Ottawa, Edmonton, Vancouver and Saskatchewan, among other areas.
Mrs. Sealy Monteith, who has been Jamaica’s top envoy in Canada since February 2010, said she is proud of the achievements of Jamaican Canadians and especially those living in Montreal, noting that they are represented in “many spheres of productive activities in this city, in public and private endeavours, and are visible throughout the community.”
The High Commissioner also encouraged the group to participate in the upcoming Biennial Diaspora Conference set for June 16 to 17, 2011 at the Sunset Jamaica Grande in Ocho Rios.
In attendance were Jamaica’s Honorary Consul for Montreal, Vonnie Rochester; Honorary Vice Consul, Brian Kotler; President of the Jamaica Association of Montreal, Noel Alexander; President of the Caribbean Pioneer Women of Canada, Thelma Johnson; President of the Jamaican Canadian Community Women’s League, Ivyline Flemming; Co-chair of the Toronto 50th Anniversary Planning Committee, Judge Pamela Appelt; and Co-chair of the Ottawa 50th Anniversary Planning Committee, Lloyd McLeod.
CONTACT: CAROLYN GOULBOURNE-WARREN
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