A $50,000 cash injection is expected to be made available to the cultural division to increase schools’ involvement in independence celebrations.
The money was promised by the country’s finance minister and Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit when he officially declared the 2012 independence season opened on Saturday.
It is expected to go towards exposing the nation’s cultural heritage during independence celebrations beginning next year.
“Some time ago I challenged the ministry of culture to organize a cultural exposition of schools. Though this year we do not have it on the calendar, I know work has been done in preparing the schools to participate in our independence celebrations,” he said.
“I don’t want it to be a competition among our schools because our school system has become too competitive. I want it to be an exposition of our cultural heritage,” he said.
Skerrit said it should be an opportunity for children to demonstrate their love and pride in Dominica and its heritage.
Meantime Culture Minister Justina Charles said Dominica should continue to cherish its culture.
She said this year’s independence celebrations will surpass other years.
“This year we have new initiatives … we are witnessing the continued involvement of the private sector in organizing cultural and sporting events,” she pointed out.
Community Development Minister Gloria Shillingford also addressed Saturday’s launching.
She called on the nation to remember God during the independence celebrations.
“As we enter the season of independence, let us do so with pride to the development of Dominica. I appeal to us all to take it a step further, beyond willingness, to work hard towards the promotion and preservation of culture,” she said.
Below are photos from the opening ceremony.
All photos by Abigail H. Antoine.