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Dr Amina Blackwood-Meeks Delivered at Sistas of D Ankh & Ma’at Sisterhood Circle

abm8 Dr. Amina Blackwood-Meeks

MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA- March 5, 2021 – The renowned international storyteller, Dr. Amina Blackwood - Meeks delivered a message which shifted perspectives at the Sistas of D Ankh & Ma'at Sisterhood Circle on February 28, 2021 at 1:00 P.M.

The virtual attendees were welcomed one by one on zoom to witness Dr Blackwood-Meeks’ powerhouse presentation which focused on using storytelling to rebuild, educate and transform the African community.

 

Amina Blackwood-Meeks explored the importance of defying ‘sick stories,’ like the story of Rapunzel which, based on her interpretation, is a story representing the over sexualization of our children. She pointed to a European perspective on the story which looked at the devastating reality of the kidnapping of children who aid in their victimization. To cement her point, she quoted a Nigerian philosopher, Ben Okri, who in a book of essay told us that “People are as healthy and as confident as the stories they tell themselves. Sick storytellers can make their nations sick and sick nations make for sick storytellers.” Therefore, be mindful of the stories that are told.

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Fair and united approach needed in global distribution of vaccines - Bartlett

unnamed Minister of Tourism The Honourable Edmund Bartlett

Thank you Minister Ed Bartlett for your advocacy for more vaccines to under- served communities such as those in the Caribbean, based on your research.
My question is : Can WELLNESS Solutions as a Lifestyle change be offered and Promoted by your Ministry as a Viable Remedy for COVID-19?
Can Jamaica produce her own COVID-19 Remedy and Solutions?
We are an Indigenous people who have been imposed upon to use Pharmaceuticals for temporary interventions instead of our own family and cultural cures found in our own herbaceuticls, botanicals, and indigenous phytotherapeutic solutions? (Commentary from Editor in Chief, Sharon P. Chambers)

26. Febuary 2021 Minister of Tourism, Edmund Bartlett has called for a fair and united approach to the global distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, amid growing criticism worldwide, that advanced countries are hoarding supplies of vaccines, while poor countries are not being given access to the life-saving medication.

Bartlett said this further threatens the economic recovery of tourism-dependent states and the global economy overall.

The Minister vented his concerns while speaking on Wednesday during the latest installment in the Edmund Bartlett lecture series, hosted virtually by the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre. The session was held under the theme: Restarting Economies Through Tourism: Vaccine Politics, Global Priorities and Destination Realities.

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East Caribbean Central Bank Conducts ‘Milestone’ Retail Digital Currency Transaction

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Wed, February 24, 2021 The East Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) has executed the first retail transaction for its “DCash” digital currency.
The successful transaction using the central bank digital currency (CBDC) was conducted at a supermarket in Grenada on Feb. 12, technology partner Bitt announced. “This transaction is a major milestone in our mission to place DCash in the hands of the people of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union. … We are now on the cusp of the public launch of DCash,” said Timothy Antoine, governor of the ECCB.
The public launch will see the roll out of DCash in four of the eight members of the East Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU): Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Saint Lucia. The central bank been developing the blockchain-based CBDC with Bitt, a
Barbados-based fintech company, after a deal was struck in spring 2018.

Work on the CBDC began in 2019, with the infrastructure built over the last year using Bitt’s digital currency management system (DCMS).

 

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WE MUST GET IT RIGHT

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Montego Bay, St James (February 8, 2021). Woman shot in church while worshipping. 87 year old grandmother shot dead in Kingston. A little four year old shot to death in Trelawny due to a family dispute. All these fell crimes committed in a little country with a population of just about 3 million people. Lives lost daily due to the horrific disease of crime. Crime has a devastating impact on the families that are directly impacted, but by extension on the country as a whole. Crime impacts the country’s tourism product and leaves tourists frightened and scared to visit Jamaica. 

In an article in 2018, tourists from the United States of America were warned not to visit Jamaica, because of how dangerous it was and if they came, they were encouraged to stay within the confines of their hotels. 

This cripples the industry as many industries that are linked to tourists coming and exploring Jamaica will be directly impacted and impeded. Tourists who are adventurous and like to walk on the streets and interact with citizens who sell craft items or fruits will be scared to complete these activities as they believe they might be robbed or may be preyed upon. This causes the local citizens to lose funds as tourists stay within the walls of the hotels and make purchases through gift shops which shortens the value chain and reduces the income local artisans earn.

Other tourist attractions are also impacted as instead of utilizing outside tours, they utilize the activities that are established by the hotel. The original marketing tag line from My Jamaica Travel  had a warm appeal to lure visitors - “ Feel it, Taste It and Explore Jamaica.” There has been a paradigm shift in how visitors will experience our Paradise and it falls woefully short of the open invitation above.

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Bartlett Congratulates Adam Stewart on Being Named Executive Chairman of SRI

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On January 19, 2021 Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett announced his  heartfelt congratulations to renowned hotelier, Adam Stewart, on his appointment as Executive Chairman of Sandals Resorts International (SRI), following the recent passing of his father, business mogul, Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart.

“I am heartened to learn that Adam Stewart has been named the Executive Chairman of Sandals Resorts International. Over the years, Adam has made a name for himself as a brilliant businessman, leader and innovator.  I can say without hesitation that the mantle of leadership of SRI could not have been passed to a more competent and deserving individual,” said Minister Bartlett. 

Stewart is the second person to ever serve as the company’s Chairman, and previously served as its Chief Executive Officer and Deputy Chairman.

“Adam, much like his father, is a global industry leader with a wealth of knowledge about the Sandals brand and the international tourism industry. I offer you my heartiest congratulations Adam, I am certain you will do exceptionally well, and that you will continue to build on the rich legacy left by your father, who has groomed you very well for this position,” said Bartlett.

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Butch Stewart, Diana and Community Tourism – A Tribute

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As I confront the sadness of the loss, I recognize the great memories and contribution he has made to me, and my journey in Community Tourism. I met Butch upon his entry into the tourism industry and was very happy to be among the lead campaigners for him to be the Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association (JHTA) President and immediately saw powerful qualities. Through a relationship of many years, he was very supportive of my efforts in Community Tourism, and as a small hotelier. When I was the Chairman of the Caribbean Hotel Association’s Small Hotels Committee, we made a pitch for the design of a ‘adopt a small hotel programme’, which encouraged large properties to select a small hotel to adopt to give them support with purchasing equipment, crockery, cutlery, linen at their prices rather than the higher retail prices, since we could not order large quantities and benefit from bulk rates. Also, to offer business development, training and marketing support.

Butch was the only large hotelier to respond positively to this programme and sent me a letter stating that he would like to adopt my small hotel in Mandeville - The Astra Country Inn. It involved a launch at Sandals Negril, and it included a credit line for us to purchase well-needed cutlery, towels, hand towels and wash rags. He then sent 7 rooms of furniture, including hairdryers. Among the most interesting memories and engagement with the community I recall, was when he wanted to discover one of our Countrystyle Community Experience tours and we selected Resource Village. The village became distinctive from its Marcus Garvey heritage and popular traditional way in making bammy. Butch participated in bammy-making and afterwards enjoyed eating with the community, the freshly made ackee and saltfish, boiled bananas and fresh fruit.

The testimony of his legacy lives on with the Sandals Foundation which has supported many community efforts across the country. His support continued for me personally. In 2008, when I was nominated for Virgin Holidays Best Personal Contribution Responsible Tourism Award, a competition with 10,000 others from around the world at World Travel Market in London. I had difficulty getting sponsorship to attend, and he invited me to his office, and sat me down in his down to earth style, and urged me on, and provided the funding I needed, stating “the world must know about this”.

This was not the only time he personally offered his support, upfront and silently. He was pleased that I won this Award together with TUI UK. These are just some examples that fall into an overall tapestry of contribution, which others can testify to. He truly was an amazing person; there will never be another Butch Stewart. I am, however, confident in the power of his legacy which lives on with his family and children. ********************************************************************************* Contact: Diana McIntyre-Pike O.D.
Founder/President
Countrystyle Community Tourism Network
Villages as Businesses
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel: 876-507-6326

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Tourism Minister Mourns the Passing of Tourism Icon Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart

Gordon-Butch-Stewart_600x400 Gordon "Butch" Stewart

KINGSTON, Jamaica; January 05, 2021:  “Butch was truly an icon and innovator, philanthropist and perhaps the greatest marketer tourism has ever seen. Sandals is indeed the largest and most enduring brand created by a Caribbean entrepreneur in tourism and arguably the world today and the standard by which luxury All Inclusive is judged. I hail him as a father, leader, benefactor, and the greatest tourism entrepreneur of our time. His passing is truly devastating,” said the Minister.

Stewart was the founder of Sandals Resorts, the leading hotel chain in the Caribbean, Beaches Resorts, and their parent company Sandals Resorts International. He was also the founder and chairman of the ATL Group of Companies and the Jamaica Observer.

“Gordon Butch Stewart has made an indelible mark. He has established himself as not just the standard by which entrepreneurship can be judged, but he has established a brand that has become global and is also the strongest statement that small island states such as Jamaica can make on global scenes, irrespective of their areas of involvement,” said Bartlett.

“I think that we can look back on his life and times and draw inspiration from the success that he has had. But I think, most importantly, we can be inspired by his resilience and the fact that he has started from nowhere, and has ended up as being one of the most celebrated human beings that Jamaica has produced in the last century,” He added.

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Accompong Maroons to Host First Virtual Celebration in 283 years

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Accompong, St. Elizabeth (December 14, 2020). 

January 6, 2021 will be the first time in 283 years that the Accompong Maroon Celebration will not be physically enjoyed by both Maroons and visitors local, regional and international.

This year’s upcoming Celebration will be held virtually. All ancestral celebrations will be observed in appreciation of our freedom fighters.

The day’s activities begin with Ritual proceedings at 10:00 a.m. followed by the Civic Ceremony which culminates at 5:00 p.m. EST.

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 Minister Bartlett to Chair OAS Tourism Recovery Working Group

Untitled-design-1 Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett

KINGSTON, Jamaica; December 09, 2020: Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett has been selected to chair a high-level Organization of American States (OAS) Working Group, which has been charged with the development of an action plan, for the recovery of the cruise and airline industries in light of the fall-out caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Jamaica is very honoured to join these important discussions on the recovery of our tourism industry. As the newly appointed chairman of the Working Group focusing on cruise and airline recovery, we will seek to leverage the collective expertise of our members to find innovative solutions as we chart the way forward in this new normal,” said Minister Bartlett.

The working group is one of four announced during the 2nd special session of the Organization of American States (OAS) Inter-American Committee on Tourism (CITUR) held on 14 August, 2020, to facilitate the effective and timely recovery of the travel and tourism sectors.

Minister Bartlett was recently selected as Chairman of the Working Group and will convene the first meeting on 10 December, 2020 with representatives from the relevant member states, which include Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guyana, Honduras, Peru and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

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Sistas of D Ankh & Ma'at Sisterhood Present Drums of Alkebulan Kwanzaa Celebration

Semaj-400x600MEDIA Dr Leahcim Semaj

Montego Bay, Jamaica. December 09, 2020. Renowned Quantum Transformation Psychologist, Dr Leahcim Semaj, will on December 13, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. close out the last quarter of the year’s programming for Sistas of D Ankh and Ma’at Sisterhood Circle with a Presentation on Kwanzaa. Guests will learn the meaning of this African American celebration, experience it first hand and intone its meaning with a view to practicing and incorporating African cultural celebration into their lives. Access the virtual programme via https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3898417079 Meeting ID. 389-841-7079.

The programme is dubbed Drums of Alkebulan and features: Nana Yahmin Hazel Vaz, Sharon Martini, Charlie Bobus and other local drummers; they will be joined by South African Drummers Don Dada and Danny Petersen, Jr.

Kwanzaa, derived from the Swahili phrase ‘matunda ya kwanza’, meaning "first fruits of the harvest" was introduced in 1966 to the USA by Dr. Maulana Karenga as a ritual to welcome the first harvests to the home. December 26 to January 1 begins the seven days of Kwanzaa, celebration of community, family and culture, established with the aim of helping African Americans and the Diaspora reconnect with their African roots and heritage.  

In Jamaica, Dr Semaj has been instrumental in educating Jamaicans about this culturally-rich holiday. He will share his affinity for the celebration and impart the meaning of Nguzo Saba (originally Nguzu Saba--the seven principles of African Heritage): Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self-determination), Ujima (collective work and responsibility), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia (purpose), Kuumba (creativity), and Imani (faith).

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Are you managing time...or is time managing you?

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There are 24 hours in a day, and what you accomplish in a day is based on how effectively you can manage your time. You do not need more hours, what you need are strategies and tips to effectively and efficiently carry out tasks in the 24 hours that we are all given. Time management is a skill that is desired by many and it leads to a smoother day and more centered mind to say the least. With the fast pace world and with the introduction of the COVID-19 pandemic many persons are tasked to work from home, and duties must be completed within the required time. This includes the same quality standard while managing all the other affairs that being at home brings. Time Management is no mystery or special superpower, it is a skill that must be nurtured and developed. How then can you manage your time, and not allow your time to manage you?

You must establish clear cut objectives and goals that you seek to carry out within a given day. To do list are still effective, whether you choose to use a simple pen and paper or one of these new advanced applications. Writing down what you seek to accomplish sets your mind and day in alignment. You know from the beginning all the tasks you seek to carry out within a given day. Value your time and therefore set that list in terms of priority items, so that those may be accomplished first. When setting this list, you must keep focus to not lose track of what is required of you.

A part of managing your time effectively is not rushing. As ironic as that sounds, it is true, rushing may lead to tasks not being done to the highest standard and you then run the risk of having to start over, which causes you to lose valuable time. Therefore, you must take your time to do tasks well and ensure that once you complete those tasks, they are final.

Be organized and ensure that you establish a workspace that is inspiring. Not because you are working from home means you should work from bed. That is a recipe for disaster and working from the comfort of your bed will cause you to feel drained and lackadaisical.

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Jamaica Wins Top Accolades at World Travel Awards 2020

World-Travel-Awards-2020 Jamaica Wins Big at World Travel Awards 2020

KINGSTON, Jamaica; November 30, 2020:  Efforts by various government ministries and tourism partners to introduce robust COVID-19 health and safety protocols to facilitate the safe re-opening of the tourism sector, continue to bear fruit, as Jamaica has been named the World’s Leading Family, Cruise and Wedding Destination at the 27th annual World Travel Awards. Several leading Jamaican tourism entities have also won major accolades.

Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, expressed appreciation for the accolades secured by the destination, stating: “We are indeed quite pleased that Jamaica has been recognized by the World Travel Awards for three top honours and that several local tourism entities have won big as well. This year has been a very challenging one and these awards are a testament to the hard work our industry has put in to safely re-open our destination with strict protocols to safeguard the health and well-being of our citizens, industry workers and visitors alike.”

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Bartlett Calls for Empathetic Leadership during COVID-19 Pandemic

edmund_bartlett_3 Edmund Bartlett, Tourism Minister, Jamaica

KINGSTON, Jamaica; November 06, 2020: Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for global policymakers to implement a more empathetic leadership style, while also remaining cautiously optimistic about the future of the industry.

The Minister was speaking yesterday at the A World for Travel virtual international event, which focused on the recovery and the development of global travel and tourism activities.

“Empathetic leadership during this time cannot be sufficiently stressed. It allowed for greater understanding of the people on whose behalf I worked, greater connection with the structure of teams, as well as for my colleagues and other leaders. It is important also, as leaders, we create space for others to demonstrate empathy towards us. These are trying times and togetherness for strength is useful,” said the Minister.

“A hallmark of leadership and highly relevant in times of crisis is the ability to remain cautiously optimistic – without spiralling into doom and gloom – is necessary in these times,” he added.

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Grange: Toots to get Heroes Park burial

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Kingston, 17 October 2020 – The Minister of Culture, Gender Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has announced that the Reggae legend, Toots Hibbert, will be laid to rest in National Heroes Park.

Minister Grange said this had become possible thanks to the generosity of the family of the late Charles Hyatt — the actor, broadcaster, director and author — whose remains were due to be re-interred in the last burial spot for cultural icons at National Heroes Park.

The Minister’s statement follows:

“At the time of his death in January, 2007, the family of our dear Charles Hyatt had requested that he be buried in National Heroes Park, but they were told that there were no more spaces available and he was instead interred at the Meadowrest Memorial Park in St. Catherine.

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‘Rediscover Jamaica’ Campaign a Major Success for Tourism

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MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica; October 6, 2020: 

Minister Bartlett,  Careribnewsroom requests that you speak to the people regarding how the island enjoys "its highest booking rate in the region" while the island experiences the highest numbers due to COVID-19 infection since the borders opened in June.

--Sharon Parris-Chambers, Publisher, Caribnewsroom

As the tourism sector seeks to rebound from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Jamaica Tourist Board’s ‘Rediscover Jamaica’ campaign is being hailed as a major success in helping to drive this process. In highlighting the positive contribution of the campaign, Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett said it “has been a great success, with some hotels reporting up to 50% to 60% occupancy from local bookings.”

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Community Tourism Niche Markets

Community_Style_Tourism_1 Community Lifestyle Tourism
  • Network/Villages as Businesses

Community Tourism and Community Development – Training Project Rationale

Tourism is a continuing growth industry with the potential to offer communities of all shapes and sizes unique development opportunities. 

Tourism is widely recognized for creating and sustaining jobs, and bringing new money to an area. 

It is undoubtedly important at a national level, particularly in terms of employment, foreign exchange, and international trade. However, what it means for individual communities can be and often is quite different. Every citizen cannot only be aware of its broad benefits but also have the opportunity to participate directly in and benefit from tourism.

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Hon. Edmund Bartlett inducted into Int’l Tourism Hall of Heroes

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The Hon. Edmund Bartlett today was welcomed to the International Tourism Hall of Heroes recognizing his wide-ranging expertise and accomplishments in the political arena. Honorable Edmund Bartlett has given over thirty-five years of service to Jamaica, working both in the Senate and in the House of Representatives.

Minister Bartlett’s reach and activities go way beyond his home country. He is a founder of the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre with a growing list of centers stretching from Malta to Nepal, Japan to Kenya.

Tourism Heroes

He is the current chairman of the UNWTO Regional Commission for the Americas and a founding member of the African Tourism Board.

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GSF Spirituality & Peace Caribbean Forum Released the ‘Natural Mystic’ in the air

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Global Spirituality Forum (GSF) produced its 3rd Global Forum on Spirituality and Peace: Lessons from the Caribbean for a Holistic Way of Life on Wednesday, September 30, 2020 on a virtual Zoom platform. A diverse group of members attended from exotic places such as The Maldives, Trinidad & Tobago, Sri Lanka, India and many others. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2020GSF

Two of the key sponsors brought greetings. Dr. Chandi Jayawardena gave the background on the GSF, its members goals and objectives. He stated that the group is open to all persons interested in spirituality, wellness, art and a few other topics. It is not based on religion, rather on spirituality, which shifts to the inward search for Self. The group plans three (3) more forums for 2020, the next being Spirituality & Spiritual Thinking, which is slated for October 31. Jody Grizzle was on hand to represent Dr. Luz Longsworth, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal (Ag.) of The UWI Open Campus.

Diana McIntyre-Pike, OD, Founder & President Countrystyle Community Tourism and Villages as Businesses was a guest presenter at the 2nd staging of GSF two months ago; based on her passionate and innovative presentation, she was invited to coordinate her own forum, which was delivered September 30.  McIntyre-Pike wove her definition of spirituality throughout her presentation which was entitled: The Spirituality of Creating Peaceful Communities. She said “Spirituality is broader than religion, but the two are closely related. Both may offer questions and answers about the infinite, provide support during emotional crisis, and invoke a sense of awe, wonder, and reverence.”

Other guest panelists were: Elizabeth Terry, NLP Trainer and Master Coach, Founder/CEO Limitless Transformation Coaching and Training Services Ltd. (Topic: NLP & Spirituality: Self-Discovery, Self-Leadership, Self-Actualization). Terry defined spirituality using profound quotes from Carolyn Myss and Stephen P. Pretorius. She challenged us to become aware of our sensatory filters and interrupt behaviours that do not serve us well.

Sharon Oshun Parris-Chambers, BA, Moderator, Transformational author, Non-denominational minister and Wholistic Therapist & Coach shared her inspired pledge adapted by The Manchester Peace Coalition & IIPT Caribbean: “I pledge, under God, to be the Peace I want to see in the world. To show Respect and Tolerance for all. I pledge with all my heart and mind to Love, Forgive, and Trust myself and others. As a committed One Love Peace Ambassador, I pledge to foster Peace and Love every day. In doing so, I heal myself, my country and the world with One Love, One Heart at a time.

Raymond Powell (Aka Prince Matthew) Founder of It's All Good Holistic Movements, offered his Welcome tribute in a short medley of songs invoking the “Natural Mystic to open the third eye” to understand the spiritual meaning of life. He drummed and chanted Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song,” followed by a brief presentation. He sang Reggae songs with timeless messages such as: “Chant down Babylon”, “War”, written by His Majesty Haile Selassie1 and sung by Bob Marley. The GSF ended on a high note with everyone singing “One Love” and feeling “Irie” (in harmony with oneself and the universe).

All presenters, including Dr. Chandi & his assistant Samanthi de Mel, received a “One Love Call to Action Certificate” originated by Sharon Oshun Parris-Chambers in 2015. The Certificate was inspired as a tribute to Bob Marley and to recognize the community spirit in individuals who answer the call to be one with humanity by leading group activities and becoming the love and peace that they wish to see in the world. www.Facebook.com/Onelovecalltoactionpledge 


Contact: Sharon Parris-Chambers
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Six Trillion USD in New Digital ‘LUMI’ to be dispersed for African development says ECO-6 and SOAD

lumi-currency The Lumi

Africa – October 1, 2020 — The world had better brace itself for the State of the African Diaspora (SOAD) which is steadily progressing its vision and which in late September announced its adoption of a new currency called : the LUMI

Timothy McPherson“The LUMI digital currency Stimulus will be issued in the amount of US$100 per month (6.26 LUMI) to every African Diasporan and every African on the continent, 18 years and above, via a digital wallet. It will be issued for a period of 3 years.  The first issuance of funds will commence on October 1, 2020 and end in October 2023,” said Timothy McPherson, Minister of Finance of the Accompong Sovereign Nation of the Maroons and Chief of the Economic Community of the African Diaspora 6th Region (ECO-6).

The Accompong Maroons, which is its own village with its own government established since the 17th century in the hills of St. Elizabeth parish on the Caribbean island of Jamaica, commenced to use the LUMI as its local currency
H.E. McPherson

since 2018.

“Accompong’s new currency is a commodity underwritten with solar and renewable energy. It will contribute to Pan-african climate change initiatives and the development of sustainable energy throughout the diaspora and Africa,” shared H.E McPherson, Canadian born and educated in Economics and Literature.

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Tourism Minister Welcomes New JHTA President

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Reader, who was elected during the associations' 59th annual general meeting, succeeded Omar Robinson, who served in the capacity for the last four years.

“I must extend my heartiest congratulations to the incoming President of the JHTA. You have been given this responsibility during a critical time in our recovery process, as an industry. However, I am confident that with your experience and innovative ideas, that you will have a successful tenure,” said Minister Bartlett.

“The Ministry of Tourism stands ready to assist you and your team at the JHTA in any way that we can. We are all in this together. Strong partnerships and the sharing of ideas is the only way we can move forward, as an industry,” he added.

During the virtual AGM, Minister Bartlett praised the JHTA for the work they have done throughout the years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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