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JIS News

The Manchester Office of the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) has organised a one-week programme of activities to mark the September 7 birthday of late cultural icon, Louise Bennett Coverley (Miss Lou).
The activities, which are being held at the Manchester High School, got underway yesterday (Sept. 6), with ‘Miss Lou’s Day,’ which saw students from various primary, all-age, high and tertiary institutions in the parish participating in speech, music and dance. There was also a panel discussion with resource persons from different organizations in Manchester.
In addition, an exhibition on the life and work of Miss Lou will be held for the entire week in the cultural hall of the Manchester High School.
Cultural Organizer for the Manchester Office of the JCDC, Pamela Pinto, told JIS News that while the re-opening of schools on Monday (Sept. 4) had prevented some institutions from attending, “the programme went very well”.
Mrs. Pinto said that next year’s celebrations would be held during the second week of September, when students would have already been settled in school and more institutions could be represented.
She however expressed the hope that more persons would come out and participate in the activities, which conclude on September 13.
The importance of celebrating the birth of Miss Lou was endorsed by students and teachers at the event, including Manchester High School teacher, Juliet Colie, who said “it is vital to celebrate Miss Lou’s birthday because she is an icon to the development of our language and a pioneer”.
Porus Primary School teacher, Peta-Gay Blake Campbell, noted that, Miss Lou “is seen as a hero in terms of our linguistics and what we think about ourselves as a people”, while, student at the school, Jerry-Gaye Longmore, said that “she impacted on our lives and left us with a very important culture”.
Miss Lou’s Day was first organized by the JCDC in 2004 to celebrate the birth and life of the cultural icon, who passed away in July.