Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A philosophy to begin the year good morning neighbour happy new year ..now to carnival 2014

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8lTlSbllRw&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Monday, December 23, 2013

#Toronto on ice


Sunday, December 22, 2013

#Toronto on ice

White Christmas turned blue ....friends, relatives and acquaintainces in Toronto and in Canada pls check in...

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Motion for a global resolution for peace guided by the #MadibaConscience - the answer to national and regional progress

Be it resolved that from this day hence all Caribbean And Trinidad and Tobago and CARICOM parliaments will sit in conciliatory developmental sessions on board the Nelson Mandela peace and reconciliation airbus of Caribbean Airlines. As the Caribbean is also keen on promoting world peace, the airbus will be available to any head of state or government or opposition of the Americas - now why didnt Barrack Obama and American Airlines with their floundering images and public perception on their global leadership think of that - as well as the African Pacific countries, the European Union, Organisation of American States and the Commonwealth too, ent #Lizzie,for a nominal fee calculated against the real costs of conflict and war... so we could build #Trinidad and Tobago's economy and society with innovative thinking #KamlaPersadBissessar and KeithRowley
... If that's what it takes to get our politicians on the same page for national and regional development then let all national and regional parliaments and caricom meetings be held on the Caricom-Mandela airbus of Caribbean Airlines. There is hope yet that #Mandela's message of peace and reconciliation would live beyond his grave and we could focus on progressive development .... forward ever...

Rediscoverie

I was dreading dusting off my library to make room for another 100-plus books I acquired this year. It's turning out to be a most enjoyable experience....I'm rediscovering my travel writings through Japan 1988; India, 1997; Europe, 1999; Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean since 2000 plus... against background of music collection some little known acquired from all these cultures...and my favorite books...now back to such enjoyable dusting....more...

Friday, December 6, 2013

Gift T&T Gift LiTTscapes - Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago






Give a Gift of Trinidad and Tobago and of Caribbean life and styles.
Gift T&T - LiTTscapes - Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago

The #Madiba conscience - rest in peace #NelsonMandela

FOR MY FRIEND  MICHAEL ALS...who embodied the MADIBA CONSCIENCE. You too RIP and thank you for the support, cheering me on and lending your spirit and courage in times of despondence 

One less conscience to the world has gone at a time when we need more men and women of conscience. May his thoughts and actions that swayed our consciousness to recognise our humanism live on. Rest in Peace Madiba. I had met Nelson Mandela at a peace rally in Hyde Park in London, a concert for his 90th birthday, a few years ago with my friend, a leader of a global civil society empowerment movement whose social conscience was nurtured in the bowels of the civil rights movement when he was growing up in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela, already a legend, the material of myth, in the flesh and so much humility and so much warmth that there was nothing overtly discernible, though much unfathomable, that suggested that this was a man who brought all the world to reexamine its conscience and its humanism. The dismantling of apathied was just one element of his impact; He swayed the world.
Today his conscience drives our global movement for social justice and transformation; the one that had us pulling the threads of global consciousness through the holiday mood burning the midnight oil on the eve of one Christmas eve to stir public opinion for the release of prisoners of conscience of Ethiopia, wrongfully imprisoned for working for social justice. We worked round the clock hoping to have them released so that they could spend Christmas with their families and not in a jail cell as they had for the previous three years; as Mandela himself had.
Sitting in a small island in the Caribbean, in Trinidad behind a phone and email, waking up friends in the global media and global civil society organisations and institutions, to stir their populations to move their governments to pressure the Ethiopian regime, posting on social networks and the sites of those who could move conscience into action .. the work goes on...
My friend, one of Mandela's proteges has not been able to keep himself out of jail not then in the aparthied struggle as a civil rights activist for oppressed people and not now for people threatened by all the economic and political and social injustices we see transferred into threats to the environment and livelihoods of people still living in poverty and squalor in the face of wastage of the world's wealth. In demanding social justice for those who do not have a voice, many regimes - corporations, governments, those who believe they hold the reigns of power - still try to snuff out the Madiba conscience in so many intrusive and inobstrusive ways - As I recounted experiences like these to a ministry seminar earlier this year- invited to talk about social justice - and identifying how misguided, illconceived and ill advised some of our bureaucratic focus were for, presumably, advancing equity and social justice (coincidentally it was Nelson Mandela (birth)Day), I was virtually hustled away from the podium and the room by the organisers.... the quest for social justice can be muted but it would not die.
Aparthied as a political construct in South Africa has been dismantled but not demolished. It is still vibrant in the class divisions and in many of the social practices if not systems - in the now class- based disparities evident in the slums of Johannesburg and Delhi and the Beetham and Marabella too...
Mandela's was a quest for personal peace through finding freedom for his people that became a part of the global movement for world peace too. I had found some of that peace and awe of the freedom fighters spawned on South African soil at the hero's park in Cape Town.... awe, peace and reverence that contrasted with the place I came from - where the sense of reverence has been ridiculed to oblivion by centuries of conditioning of inferiority and dependence and unfreedom ...and where, with yet unfree consciousness, of our peoples and politicians devote unconditional time and energies in tearing up, pulling down and destroying each other and often in the name of social justice .... a place where we have no heroes, or at best, want to believe they are all dead....
There is so much we can learn, so much we can do to keep the conscience alive just by being better humans.
The Madiba conscience lives on and so he may rest in peace....

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Trinidad and Tobago invites UNESCO to experience multiculturalism


T&T offers multicultural experience to UNESCO’s New Humanism thrust
Takes its seat on UNESCO Executive Board at 193rd meeting in Paris

Trinidad and Tobago has offered to share its knowledge and experiences of multiculturalism and diversity management with the global UNESCO community, as it took its seat on the Executive Board of UNESCO for the first time in 16 years.
Congratulating the representative from Egypt, Mr Mohamed Sameh Amr, a lawyer, as the uncontested newly-appointed Chair of the Executive Board at its 193rd meeting, Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the T&T National Commission for UNESCO who represented Trinidad and Tobago, stated:
“On behalf of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean Economic Community of which Trinidad and Tobago is the current Chair and our Latin American associates, we pledge to work with you to promote and expand UNESCO’s vision of building a culture of peace in the minds of men and women.
“We look forward to benefitting from your knowledge, and we also offer our humble experiences in peacefully managing the diversity of virtually all the cultures of the world from within our very small island space where multiculturalism is alive and well - comprising our indigenous peoples of the Americas as well as the migrants from Europe: Spanish, French, Dutch, Britain, Africa, India, China, Syria, Lebanon and other parts of the globe.”
To the new Chair and Board; the new President to the UNESCO General Assembly, Mr. Hao Ping from China, re-elected Director General Mrs Irina Bokova and staff and associates of UNESCO present at the meeting, she said: “We are committed to working with you and the Executive Board towards projecting the vision of the Director General for a New Humanism, that will return our priorities to people-centred development, inclusivity, equity and freedom and fairness for all.”
Rampersad thanked and congratulated the outgoing Chair, Ms Alissandra Cummins of Barbados for flying the region’s flag high.
Noting the Caribbean’s extended ties through its diasporas with the various UNESCO regions, Rampersad pointed out the absence of the Caribbean community in a Higher Education initiative involving Africa and reminded UNESCO to remember in such initiatives the significant diasporas in the Caribbean region that were trying to evolve culturally-sensitive education actions. This was during the Executive Board’s examination of preliminary programmes and projects for the coming year. In an immediate response, the Director General acknowledged the oversight and promised to expand the composition of targeted groups and institutions in this regard.
Trinidad and Tobago, through Dr Gopeesingh during the General Assembly, has already tabled at UNESCO a concept for inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – among actions in other programme areas of heritage and culture, communications and science and better recognition of the economic, social and cultural value of the Caribbean Sea.
Rampersad was part of the four-member delegation who attended the UNESCO General Conference.
Led by President of the T&T National Commission and Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh, the team included Ambassador John Sandy, T&T’s Permanent Representative in Geneva and Ms Susan Shurland, Secretary General of the T&T National Commission.
Trinidad and Tobago was one of three new CARICOM members – including Belize and St Kitts - to join the 58-member board for 2013 to 2017 term, after a hiatus of 16 years, winning membership with support from al UNESCO regional divisions in Europe, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and the Americas with the highest number of votes in its region of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Trinidad and Tobago previously served on the UNESCO Executive Board from 1993 to 1997, when it was represented by Professor Lawrence Carrington; and from 1985 to 1988 by the late Mrs. Sheilah Solomon who was recognised by UNESCO as one of 60 women of the world contributing to constructing a Foundation of Peace.


Caption: Trinidad and Tobago Representative, Dr Kris Rampersad addresses the opening session of the newly constituted UNESCO Executive Board in Paris, France on Friday (November 22, 2013). Photo courtesy UNESCO
For more see:
See more in Links: Blog Demokrissy
T&T asks UNESCO to fcus on special needs children
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2013/11/trinidad-and-tobago-asks-unesco-to_17.html
T&T tops region in UNESCO elections:
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2013/11/trinidad-and-tobago-tops-region-in.html
Call us BOSS SIDS tell UNESCO
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2013/11/call-us-boss-say-sids-unesco-general.html
UNESCO World Heritage being run like FIFA say delegates: http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2013/11/world-heritage-being-run-like-fifa.html
Inspiring T&T yuth lights up the world
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2013/11/inspiring-t-youth-lighting-up-unesco.html

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Pieces of the Pie: Haitian-Dominican Republic divide

In the beginning it was Ayti and Ayti beget Quesqueya who became Hispaniola in Columbus' journals in which he claimed it for a ruler across the big waters. Following a drunken feast on the intoxicating liquor brought from across the big waters, the ruler and his once-rival held either ends of the wholesome Ayti and pulled her asundar. The rulers clanked glasses and patted each other's backs in brotherly in celebration of their feat in separating one island into two countries, each claiming ownership of the bits they held between their respective fingers, while her life-blood haemorraged through centuries of underdevelopment...the disjointed parts yearning for reunion while post colonial rulers relive the prejudices of their old masters ...
My friends on each side of the divide try to reach out as in Michaelangelo's fresco in the Sistne Chapel at the Vatican of the Creation of Adam following the indigeneous Separation of Light from Darkness, but what religion and politicians and new world Adams have torn asunder, no people can bring together .....  more Letters to Lizzie...
   


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Cultural Diplomacy: Ja-TT One Love alive and well


 Where One Love Lives - With the last of the Wailers - The Honourable Bunny Wailer as he graduated from our training at a UNESCO Workshop on Intangible Cultural Heritage in Jamaica last month. (Right photo)

This is how we do regional unity













Left Photo  Cutting the CARICOM cake at the CARICOM evening at the UNESCO General Assembly with Minister of Culture and Youth of Jamaica, The Honourable Lisa Hanna (
from right), Dr Kris Rampersad - Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO; other Caricom Delegates and Trinidad and Tobago Permanent Delegate based in Geneva, Ambassador John Sandy (left)
Kris Rampersad photos.
Website: krisrampersadglobal

Sunday, November 24, 2013

We are BOSS SIDS tell UNESCO General Assembly in Paris

Clear evidence of the revolution in perspectives sweeping the globe, not the least of which is at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, those dubbed in recent developmental terminology as Small Island Developing States - SIDS - have recommended a change in designation to Big Ocean Sustainable States during the UNESCO General Assembly in Paris, France. It provided a platform of equity for the convergence of small islands of the Caribbean, the Pacific and elsewhere to leverage away from representations on tthe bases of needs to their strengths ...more... 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

World Heritage being run like FIFA claim UNESCO member states

As UNESCO World heritage assembly meets in PARIS to examine governance finance administration of UNESCOs flagship programme and set priorities for net decade member states commended achievements while holding committee to account.... more

World Heritage Assembly resumes to continue agenda after suspension


World Heritage Assembly suspended as delegates debate equitable representation

Proceedings of the 19th General Assembly of the UNESCO World Heritage committee at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France stalled and was suspended as delegates debated equitable representation and need for revision of the rules as regards compositon to the World Heritage Committee. The Assembly could not attract a forum as the majority of delgates assigned themselves to an informal working group set up to discuss revisions of the rules.
This arose from failure of any member of African groups to qualify for one of the 12 seats in the current rounds of elections to the Committee; and follows a similar situation involving Latin America and the Caribbean at the previous general assembly.
The situation actually points to the greater challenges facing the World Hritage Committee and UNESCO itself to transform and adapt to new global realities and the increasing demands for inclusivity and representation while upholding one ofthe principal pillars of what has become one of UNESCO's flagship programmes governed by the World Heritage Convention which has to date some 962 iscriptions
While the immediate attention is on the issue of equitable geographic and cultural representations, the need for more fundamental reforms to the 1972 World Heritage Convention as well as its other culture conventions related to Intangible, built and natural heritage to meet the dynmic and effervescent global realities as they relate to clture and which require creative and innovative ways of engagement ..... more     

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Caribbean News Now!: Trinidad and Tobago to sit on UNESCO executive board for first time in 16 years

Caribbean News Now!: Trinidad and Tobago to sit on UNESCO executive board for first time in 16 years

World heritage election categories questioned as Africa fails to qualify for a seat. Jamaica, Peru, in

UNESCO delegates call for review of elections to world heritage committee following failure of any African country to qualify in the elections held yesterday....calls for election that will promote more equitable regional representation....
Meanwhile Jamaica won the electoral category for country with no world heritage site and Peru also voted in - making two more from the Latin American and Caribbean (GRULAC) Group who join continuing member Colombia
Congrats to our Jamaican and Latin American colleagues! That's how we can succeed when we work together as a region!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

LiTTmas TTime in the CiTTy presents Trini Christmas literary memories

In asssociation with the Abercrombie Tea House, we will stage LiTTmas Time in the CiTTy from 5 pm on November 29, 2013 at the tea house on 98 Abercromby Street, Port of Spain.Website
The evening of tea, entertainment and readings will be inspired by LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago.
It will be a Christmas event with a literary twist. It was a pleasure to accept the invitation by Sister Mary Jane of the Abercrombie Tea House to partner with them in invoking and reliving Trini Christmas experiences at their tea house with a custom-made LiTTribute/LiTTevent that can be tailored and themed on request to any occasion – anniversaries, award ceremonies or any celebration or observances.
Our presentations will draw from the representations of Christmas by many of our writers of fiction who have captured the spirit of Christmas from our rural villages to our towns and in the city itself, and including early writers as Charles Kingsley in his nineteenth century travelogue, At Last, A Christmas in the West Indies to more recent representations of village Christmas, music, cuisine and practices and experiences through the eyes of authors and their fictional characters. These form part of the representations by the some 60 fiction writers in some 100 works described in LiTTscapes .
As with our other events, and publication of the LiTTscapes itself, this too is a gift to T&T and as it also makes the ideal gift for the season for friends at home and abroad, it will also be on special offer to patrons of LiTTmas Time In the CiTTy.
The highly acclaimed LiTTscapes, has been commended as full of Walcottian ‘visual surprise’ that captures almost everything about Trinidad and Tobago’s landscapes, culture, cuisine, sports, lifestyles, institutions in more than 500 full colour photographs and descriptions.   
 By LiTTmas Time in the CiTTy, we hope to provide a new layer of enjoyment of the season, and reinforce images and memories of a local Christmas, when much of the imagery of Christmas with which we are presented, by advertisers and others, are still largely drawn from mainly the indoctrination of British literature and foreign/American pop music and culture..
In keeping with our other events which were staged at historic heritage buildings, White Hall and Knowsley in Port of Spain, Moray House in Guyana, the National Museum in Antigua, the staging at the Abercrombie House is o n the grounds of the first teachers’ training college in Trinidad and this historic home of the sisters of St Joseph of Cluny.
LiTTmas Time in the CiTTy will be a prelude to reintroduction of our LiTTours.

For details email lolleaves@gmail.com,  and for bookings of the limited number of tables at the Abercrombie Tea House call  1-868-624-7756. 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Trinidad and Tobago Tops Region in UNESCO Executive Elections

Takes its place on the world body for first time in 16 years

 PARIS, UNESCO - Nov. 13, 2013: For the first time in 16 years Trinidad and Tobago will sit on the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. See Trinidad and Tobago National Statement to UNESCO 

Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad is representing Trinidad and Tobago at the first meeting of the executive board to take place on November 22, 2013 in Paris which follows the UNESCO General Assembly in Paris currently in progress.
 Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections of the UNESCO Executive Board held in Paris, France, last week.
Of seven candidates contesting six seats in the GRULAC group , the six now on the Executive Board are Trinidad and Tobago, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Belize, Argentina and St Kitts/Nevis. They were among the twenty eight new members who were voted in at the elections held at UNESCO Headquarters this week.
President of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh was thrilled at the electoral results. Thanking everyone for their support He stated:
“After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the Executive Board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO.  Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the Executive Board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO will certainly help enhance its already very favourable image and profile in the UNESCO world, and presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions. “Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.  
The keenly contested elections, involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts/Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.

“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said national commission chair, Dr Kris Rampersad. “From the international spread of votes, it also indicates the high esteem in which the rest of the UNESCO world also involving Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East hold our country  This year our National Commission launched what will be one of its flagship projects – Leading for Literacy – which taps into the entire education system through strengthening leadership skills of principals and teachers towards improving literacy levels, and now the President has asked that we also prioritise further inclusion of special needs children.  We look forward to deepening our engagement with UNESCO for the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and the wider GRULAC region, working in partnership with our counterparts on the executive board. The congratulations are still coming in and there is a tremendous amount of good will and expectations from among our counterparts about our admission to the board.”
Trinidad and Tobago was represented at the elections by Ambassador John Sandy, Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva; Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Ms Susan Shurland, Secretary General of the National Commission. Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh, who led the four member delegation returned to Trinidad on November 12.
The Executive Board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO (others are the General Conference and Secretariat) charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the Director-General. It makes recommendations on the admission of new States, for the appointment of the Director
General and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.
F
or more on UNESCO Executive Election and Executive Board see:
Previous Blog: Trinidad and Tobago ask UNESCO to focus on Special Needs Children
https://sites.google.com/site/krisrampersadglobal

Captions:
  1. Ambassador John Sandy, Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva and Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, vote at the elections for the UNESCO Executive Board at UNESCO headquarters, Paris, France.  
  2.  Caption: (L-R) President of the National Commission for UNESCO Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh; Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, Dr Kris Rampersad; Secretary General Ms Susan Shurland; and Permanent Delegate of Trinidad and Tobago to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy in a planning meeting at UNESCO General Assembly, Paris. 

T&T Tops Region At Election To UNESCO Executive Board

Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO
Ambassador John Sandy, Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva and Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, vote at the elections for the UNESCO Executive Board at UNESCO headquarters, Paris, France.
Ambassador John Sandy, Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva and Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, vote at the elections for the UNESCO Executive Board at UNESCO headquarters, Paris, France.
Takes its place on the world body for first time in 16 years.

PARIS, France -- For the first time in 16 years Trinidad and Tobago will sit on the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation.
Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad is representing Trinidad and Tobago at the first meeting of the executive board to take place on November 22, 2013 in Paris which follows the UNESCO General Assembly in Paris currently in progress.
 Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections of the UNESCO Executive Board held in Paris, France, last week.
Of seven candidates contesting six seats in the GRULAC group , the six now on the Executive Board are Trinidad and Tobago, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Belize, Argentina and St Kitts/Nevis. They were among the twenty eight new members who were voted in at the elections held at UNESCO Headquarters this week. 
President of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh was thrilled at the electoral results. Thanking everyone for their support He stated:
“After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the Executive Board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO.  Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the Executive Board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO will certainly help enhance its already very favourable image and profile in the UNESCO world, and presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions. “Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.   
The keenly contested elections, involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts/Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.
“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said national commission chair, Dr Kris Rampersad. “From the international spread of votes, it also indicates the high esteem in which the rest of the UNESCO world also involving Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East hold our country  This year our National Commission launched what will be one of its flagship projects – Leading for Literacy – which taps into the entire education system through strengthening leadership skills of principals and teachers towards improving literacy levels, and now the President has asked that we also prioritise further inclusion of special needs children.  We look forward to deepening our engagement with UNESCO for the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and the wider GRULAC region, working in partnership with our counterparts on the executive board. The congratulations are still coming in and there is a tremendous amount of good will and expectations from among our counterparts about our admission to the board.”
Trinidad and Tobago was represented at the elections by Ambassador John Sandy, Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva; Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Ms Susan Shurland, Secretary General of the National Commission. Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh, who led the four member delegation returned to Trinidad on November 12.
The Executive Board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO (others are the General Conference and Secretariat) charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the Director-General. It makes recommendations on the admission of new States, for the appointment of the Director General and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.
For more on UNESCO Executive Election and Executive Board see:

Three Caribbean countries elected to UNESCO executive board

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© UNESCO/Michel Ravassard
Plenary hall of the 34th General Conference of UNESCO with flags
PARIS, France– Three Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries have been elected to serve on the 58-member executive board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
 Belize, St. Kitts-Nevis and Trinidad and Tobago will join the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Argentina from the Latin America and Caribbean grouping in the 58-member board.
This is the first time that Port of Spain has been elected to the executive board since 1997. The first meeting of the executive board is due to take place on Friday and Trinidad and Tobago will be represented by the Chair of its National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad.
 Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections of the UNESCO Executive Board held here last week.
“After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the Executive Board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO,” said Education Minister Dr Tim Gopeesingh.
“Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the Executive Board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions.
 “Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.
The keenly contested elections, involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts/Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.
“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said Rampersad.
The Executive Board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the Director-General.
It makes recommendations on the admission of new States, the appointment of the Director General and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.

Trinidad and Tobago tops region in UNESCO Executive elections

posted Nov 17, 2013, 12:28 PM by Kris Rampersad
Takes its place on the world body for first time in 16 years
 PARIS, UNESCO - Nov. 13, 2013

1For the first time in 16 years Trinidad and Tobago will sit on the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation.
Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad is representing Trinidad and Tobago at the first meeting of the executive board to take place on November 22, 2013 in Paris which follows the UNESCO General Assembly in Paris currently in progress.
 Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections of the UNESCO Executive Board held in Paris, France, last week.
Of seven candidates contesting six seats in the GRULAC group , the six now on the Executive Board are Trinidad and Tobago, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Belize, Argentina and St Kitts/Nevis. They were among the twenty eight new members who were voted in at the elections held at UNESCO Headquarters this week.
President of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh was thrilled at the electoral results. Thanking everyone for their support He stated:
“After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the Executive Board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO.  Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the Executive Board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO will certainly help enhance its already very favourable image and profile in the UNESCO world, and presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions. “Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.
The keenly contested elections, involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts/Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.
“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said national commission chair, Dr Kris Rampersad. “From the international spread of votes, it also indicates the high esteem in which the rest of the UNESCO world also involving Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East hold our country  This year our National Commission launched what will be one of its flagship projects – Leading for Literacy – which taps into the entire education system through strengthening leadership skills of principals and teachers towards improving literacy levels, and now the President has asked that we also prioritise further inclusion of special needs children.  We look forward to deepening our engagement with UNESCO for the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and the wider GRULAC region, working in partnership with our counterparts on the executive board. The congratulations are still coming in and there is a tremendous amount of good will and expectations from among our counterparts about our admission to the board.”
Trinidad and Tobago was represented at the elections by Ambassador John Sandy, Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva; Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Ms Susan Shurland, Secretary General of the National Commission. Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh, who led the four member delegation returned to Trinidad on November 12.
The Executive Board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO (others are the General Con
ference and Secretariat) charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the Director-General. It makes recommendations on the admission of new States, for the appointment of the Director General and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.
For more on UNESCO Executive Election and Executive Board see:
http://www.unesco.org/new/en/executive-board/mandates-and-functions

Captions:
  1. Ambassador John Sandy, Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Geneva and Dr Kris Rampersad, Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, vote at the elections for the UNESCO Executive Board at UNESCO headquarters, Paris, France.  
  2.  Caption: (L-R) President of the National Commission for UNESCO Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh; Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, Dr Kris Rampersad; Secretary General Ms Susan Shurland; and Permanent Delegate of Trinidad and Tobago to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy in a planning meeting at UNESCO General Assembly, Paris. 

Three Caribbean countries elected to UNESCO executive board

By CMC - Monday, November 18th, 2013.
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© UNESCO/Michel Ravassard
Plenary hall of the 34th General Conference of UNESCO with flags
PARIS, France– Three Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries have been elected to serve on the 58-member executive board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
 Belize, St. Kitts-Nevis and Trinidad and Tobago will join the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Argentina from the Latin America and Caribbean grouping in the 58-member board.
This is the first time that Port of Spain has been elected to the executive board since 1997. The first meeting of the executive board is due to take place on Friday and Trinidad and Tobago will be represented by the Chair of its National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad.
 Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections of the UNESCO Executive Board held here last week.
“After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the Executive Board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO,” said Education Minister Dr Tim Gopeesingh.
“Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the Executive Board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions.
 “Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.
The keenly contested elections, involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts/Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.
“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said Rampersad.
The Executive Board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the Director-General.
It makes recommendations on the admission of new States, the appointment of the Director General and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.


Trinidad and Tobago to sit on UNESCO executive board for first time in 16 years
Published on November 19, 2013Email To Friend    Print Version

unesco.jpg
(L-R) President of the National Commission for UNESCO Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh; Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, Dr Kris Rampersad; Secretary General Susan Shurland; and Permanent Delegate of Trinidad and Tobago to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy in a planning meeting at UNESCO General Assembly, Paris.

PARIS, France -- For the first time in 16 years, Trinidad and Tobago will sit on the executive board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission, Dr Kris Rampersad will be representing Trinidad and Tobago at the first meeting of the executive board to take place on November 22, 2013, in Paris, which follows the UNESCO General Assembly.

Trinidad and Tobago received the highest number of votes in the Latin America and Caribbean (GRULAC) UNESCO regional division in the elections for the UNESCO executive board.

Of seven candidates contesting six seats in the GRULAC group, the six now on the executive board are Trinidad and Tobago, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Belize, Argentina and St Kitts-Nevis. They were among the 28 new members who were voted in at the elections held at UNESCO Headquarters.

President of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh was thrilled at the electoral results.

Thanking everyone for their support, he stated: “After 16 years since it was last represented on this board, Trinidad and Tobago is ready to take its place on the executive board as a leader in the GRULAC region and consolidate national and regional activities through UNESCO to benefit our populations, the main agenda-setting organ of UNESCO.”

“Already, we have presented to UNESCO a concept for deepening and broadening the inclusion of special needs children – which amount to about 30 percent of the world’s children – into the education, and by extension, other social systems. Through our involvement on the executive board, we will be working towards the realisation of this, as well as strengthening UNESCO’s work in the region to other aspects of the education sector, as well as heritage and culture, communications and science,” he said.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy said the involvement of Trinidad and Tobago in the main decision making organ of UNESCO will certainly help enhance its already very favourable image and profile in the UNESCO world, and presents an opportunity to deepen engagement and expand partnerships with other regions.

“Victory came because of great team effort, not only among us on team Trinidad and Tobago, but also in our leadership of negotiations with the rest of the region, CARICOM and individual candidates,” he said.

The keenly contested elections involved intense behind-the-scenes negotiations, which resulted in the Caribbean sub-sector presenting a “clean slate” including Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and St Kitts-Nevis to the UNESCO electoral community.

“That the highest numbers voted for Trinidad and Tobago in the GRULAC group suggests the tremendous faith and confidence the UNESCO world and the region have in our country and the leadership, vision, programmes and policies we have been presenting to UNESCO,” said Rampersad. “From the international spread of votes, it also indicates the high esteem in which the rest of the UNESCO world also involving Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East hold our country This year our National Commission launched what will be one of its flagship projects – Leading for Literacy – which taps into the entire education system through strengthening leadership skills of principals and teachers towards improving literacy levels, and now the president has asked that we also prioritise further inclusion of special needs children. We look forward to deepening our engagement with UNESCO for the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and the wider GRULAC region, working in partnership with our counterparts on the executive board. The congratulations are still coming in and there is a tremendous amount of good will and expectations from among our counterparts about our admission to the board.”

Trinidad and Tobago was represented at the elections by Ambassador Sandy; Rampersad; and Susan Shurland, secretary general of the National Commission. Gopeesingh, who led the four member delegation, returned to Trinidad on November 12.

The executive board, which comprises 58 members, is one of the three constitutional organs of UNESCO (others are the General Conference and Secretariat) charged with examining UNESCO’s programme of work and budget estimates submitted to it by the director-general. It makes recommendations on the admission of new states, for the appointment of the director general and summons international and non-governmental conferences on education, the sciences and the humanities.


Trinidad and Tobago calls for focus on Special Needs Children at UNESCO Caption: (L-R) President of the National Commission for UNESCO Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh; Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, Dr Kris Rampersad; Secretary General Ms Susan Shurland; and Permanent Delegate of Trinidad and Tobago to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy in a planning meeting at UNESCO General Assembly, Paris. (Photo Courtesy: Ministry of Education) November 16, 2013: President of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO and the Honourable Minister of Education, Dr Tim Gopeesingh has requested that UNESCO engage the United Nation’s system to pay specific attention to children with special education needs. He was speaking at a meeting of CARICOM delegates with the UNESCO Director General, Mrs Irina Bokova at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris where he was attending the 37th UNESCO General Assembly last week. The meeting involved signing of a memorandum of agreement between UNESCO and CARICOM which included cooperation for promotion of inclusive quality education and effective learning programmes and strengthening of health education; sustainable development of Small Island Developing States; mitigation of natural hazards; heritage preservation, education and strengthening institutional capacities; and for promotion of freedom of expression as a basic human right. CARICOM Secretary General, Mr Irwin La Rocque signed on behalf of CARICOM. Stating that it is estimated that some 30 percent of the world’s school children have special needs in the areas of dyslexia, autism, ADHD, Down Syndrome, behavioural and psychological abnormalities and neurological diseases, Dr Gopeesingh noted that educators needed to be alert from early childhood care and education (ECCE) levels, but for the most parts, special needs children are not catered to and “fall out” of the education system. In response, Mrs Bokova stated that the significant numbers cited by Dr Gopeesingh certainly warranted that UNESCO re-examine its programmes and actions to integrate engagement of such special needs children. Dr Gopeesingh brought greetings on behalf of the Chair of CARICOM, the Honourable Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Mrs Kamla Persad-Bissessar. He announced that Mrs Persad-Bissessar would be promoting development of regional policy to address special needs children and hoped UNESCO can also facilitate this focus throughout the UN system. He expressed gratitude to UNESCO for its support to the region in the drive of Education for Sustainable Development that is helping to “not just widen but also deepen our impact”. He drew attention to the Leading for Literacy project launched by Trinidad and Tobago’s National Commission for UNESCO this year which is an offspring of the UNESCO Director General’s 10,000 Principals’ Leadership Programme, with support from the UNESCO Participatory Programme and public-private-NGO sector partnerships. It is a pilot to train principals and teachers in Leading for Literacy in primary schools. “Already we are seeing tangible results from this as part of a Decade for Literacy focus by our National Commission which also foresees extending this drive to our Caribbean counterparts,” he said. He explained that he hopes to see a similar focus in Leading For Numeracy soon, in the thrust towards “not just quantitative but also qualitative education’, and expansion of the school curriculum to include moral values, ethics, citizenry, character development, physical education, visual and performing arts.” Dr Gopeesingh also identified successes and other areas in which support was needed in the region as: Early Childhood Care and Education; IT and ICTs, technical and vocational education, Universal ECCE, and teacher training and development. Dr Gopeesingh led Trinidad and Tobago’s delegation to the General Assembly which included Permanent Delegate of Trinidad and Tobago to UNESCO, Ambassador John Sandy; Chair of the Trinidad and Tobago National Commission for UNESCO, Dr Kris Rampersad and Secretary General Ms Susan Shurland. At the General Assembly, Trinidad and Tobago was voted on to the Executive Board of UNESCO receiving with the highest number of votes cast for the six newly-admitted representatives from the Latin American and Caribbean region. http://www.news.gov.tt/content/trinidad-and-tobago-calls-focus-special-needs-children-unesco#.UokRo8Rwo0o http://www.tntfinder.com/articles/1113/tt-calls-for-focus-on-special-needs-children-at-unesco.html


Trinidad and Tobago asks UNESCO to help with ageing population 


Minister of Education Dr Tim Gopeesingh has asked UNESCO to assist Trinidad and Tobago in dealing with the challenge of its ageing population. Addressing the 37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO on Thursday in Paris, France, Gopeesingh, who is also seeking membership on UNESCO’s executive board for the next four years, told newly-installed UNESCO president Hao Ping, “While there continues to be focused emphasis on youth development, we also propose that UNESCO take a closer look at the challenges our countries face in relation to ageing populations and the need to integrate elderly citizens and help them adjust to this technologically-driven age, while mobilising and utilising their knowledge and skills to inform the next generations. “We propose that as a member of the executive board, Trinidad and Tobago can lead this as a global UNESCO effort at inclusion of all citizens and to bridge the gap, and so we look forward to your supporting our membership bid.” Gopeesingh also outlined T&T’s efforts to maintain UNESCO’s Education for Sustainable Development drive which, he said, ensured active educational intervention to students with special needs in the areas of dyslexia, autism, ADHD, Down’s Syndrome, behavioural and psychological abnormalities and neurological diseases, with an inclusion focus. “The director general will be pleased to know that, as an offspring of her 10,000 Principals Leadership Programme, we launched this year with resources from my Government, the private sector and from UNESCO’s PP, a pilot to train principals and teachers in Leading for Literacy in primary schools,” he added. Gopeesingh led a four-member delegation, including Ambassador John Sandy, Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva; Dr Kris Rampersad, chair of the National Commission for UNESCO; and Susan Shurland, secretary general. The conference was expected to shape the organisation’s strategy and direction for the next eight years. UNESCO is in the midst of a major reform, aimed at making UNESCO more relevant, more effective and more responsive to global challenges to peace and development. http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/Gopeesingh-asks-UNESCO-to-help-with-ageing-population-231376101.html