Dominica-American Relief and Development Association celebrates National Day

DARDA members begin the National Day celebration with the singing of the United States and Dominica national anthems

On Sunday, November 6th 2011 Dominica-American Relief & Development Association (DARDA) held its annual National Day Gala at The Eastwood Manor – Bronx, NY in celebration of Dominica’s 33rd Anniversary of Independence.

Each year, DARDA invites friends from New York and neighboring states to don their National Dress and come enjoy great food, music, and company.  Guests are often addressed by various Dominican dignitaries, entertained with cultural performances by local dance groups and treated to a West-Indian style buffet.

Attended by over 200 guests, this year DARDA’s keynote speaker was His Excellency Vince Henderson, Permanent Representative and Ambassador to the United Nations.  Also in attendance were Mrs. Barbara Dailey – Dominica Consul General, Miss Kelly Thomas – Miss Wob Dwiyet New Jersey 2011, and actress Shenell Edmonds – “Destiny” on ABC’s One Life to Live.

For entertainment, guests were treated to traditional dances such as the quadrille and a live Jing Ping band by “Know Your Culture Dance Co. and Jing Ping Band” (a New Jersey based group under the supervision of Sabeniah George Mingo).  Guests were also treated to a creative dance by “Nou Wive Cultural Group” (a New York based group led by Justina Henderson) as well as a parade highlighting the history of Dominican Traditional Wear from slavery to present day (organized by Cecilia McIntyre).

As a special treat, the crowd was entertained with thoughts of familiar traditions and favorite places in Dominica by MC Ronald (Baba) Deschamps, followed by dancing to lively music from DJ Alick Paul.

DARDA is thankful for the continued success of the annual National Day Gala, the patronage of so many friends and supporters, and the funds ultimately generated, which are donated to various worthy causes throughout Dominica including the Grotto Home for the Homeless.

For more information on DARDA, including pictures of the National Day Celebration, please visit our website at or find us on facebook!

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  1. Frank
    November 19, 2011

    For those who say they never know about these functions, DARDA celebrates National Day every year and has been doing so for the past 28 years. You can get all information about our activities on our website,
    Our function is not organized either by the Consulate or Dominica Government. We are a fully registered non-profit organization for the past 30 years. Thanks for your interest.

  2. Sout Man
    November 18, 2011

    Very imformative website. Very beautiful photos. Nice knowing that Justina Henderson keeps the Tradibelle flame burning. Great job guys. We appreciate your contributions.

  3. Dominican
    November 17, 2011

    Notalgia you are so right what is the job of the consulate a chosen few are informed about any activities or meetings with representatives from the Government in NY. I have to say that the DOMINICAN LABOUR PARTY GOVERNMENT are just wasting tax payers money they have carried the class thing from Dominica to NY

  4. Root
    November 17, 2011

    DARA great job keeping Dominica culture alive in the US. My heart goes out to KNOW YOUR CULTURE group, you all are doing an outstanding job with the KID, JING PING etc.
    I cannot wait for the next show.

  5. GREAT
    November 17, 2011

    Great, love to see our culture being celebrated all over, but yet another event I did not know about although I am registered with the Dominica Consular General Office.

    • North
      November 17, 2011

      Th Consular office is suppose to inform you an event put on by an NGO?? Were you expecting a personal invitation when the event was organized by DARDA? You stay intouch with your Dominican Community you know what is going on.

    • Tony
      November 17, 2011

      Hi I agree with you because I am also registered but I am not notified when any of our elected leaders are visiting New York. They have my E-mail and home address but they still do not notify me of any cultural or political events concerning Dominica.

      • Notalgia
        November 17, 2011

        You are so right. I have no idea what the consulate is there for. They must be keeping these activities a secret.Maybe a selected few are told about it. I thought these groups were suppose to keep us informed about activities but never does, in a case like that WHY do they ask for our email address?????

  6. friend
    November 17, 2011

    great job!

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