#TheBahamas, November 24, 2023 – Musical and dance selections, greetings and prayers by high-spirited primary school students marked the 2023 Universal Children’s Day service, November 21, at Church of God of Prophecy, East Street Tabernacle.
Hundreds of children from independent and public institutions, clad in colorful garments and/or uniforms participated in the celebration, also known as World Children’s Day and organized by the Primary Principals’ Association (PPA). Teachers, parents, senior education officials and members of the PPA were also on hand. The theme for the event was ‘For Every Child, Every Right: Invest in Our Future.’
Acting director of Education Dominique McCartney-Russell offered greetings and emphasized that it is everybody’s business to safeguard the nation’s children from violence, abuse, exploitation and forms of neglect.
She said, “The Bahamian village — our stakeholders, we must be vigilant, sober and alert to identifying all barriers and removing them. We must protect our children’s right to quality education. We must go back to the days when grandmothers sat on the porch observing the happenings in the neighborhood and speaking out when they saw something out of the norm. Yes, we considered them nosey, but they had very good intentions. Every child on the streets, especially during school hours or after hours, was subject to questioning and a call was made to a parent.
“This is a village and the challenges demand a village response. The church, the home, the school — we must all work together if we are to overcome the challenges.”
Permanent Secretary Lorraine Armbrister presented remarks on behalf of Minister of Education and Technical and Vocational Training the Hon. Glenys Hanna-Martin. She gave an overview of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child – Education 2030 Frame Work for Action adopted in a high level meeting alongside the 38th UNESCO General Conference.
Speaking to the relevance of the theme and observations of injustices done to children, Mrs. Armbrister announced the establishment of 2 hotlines in New Providence and Grand Bahama for persons to report incidents of “children in distress” to education officials.
Said Mrs. Armbrister, “. . . In too many instances we have allowed technology and the advancement of social media and the like to shape the conscience and character of our children. Digital screens continue to flash before them inculcating distasteful values while they have access to over 400 television stations, Youtube channels and Tiktok. We must fight for the souls of our little treasures. We must fight for every child, for every right.”
In a message to the students, Rev. Dr. Diana Francis, Pastor, First Baptist Church, told the children that they are treasures, they are a powerful part of the future, they will bring pleasure and they are to be the best students they can be.
“Though the weather you are to stand strong, take a licking and keep on ticking,” said Rev. Francis.
Bahamas Consulate Opens in LA
#Bahamas#LosAngeles, February 19th, 2024 – The Bahamas Consulate General in Los Angeles, United States. officially opened on February 19th, 2024, by Prime Minister Philip Davis, reaffirming the commitment of the Government to protect all Bahamians as well as The Bahamas’ Economic interests and provide consular support for Bahamians on the West Coast of the United States. This was announced by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a press release.
NBA’s Buddy Hield appointed as Ambassador
#BuddyHield#Bahamas, February 19th, 2024 – Accomplished Bahamian Basketball player Chavano Buddy Hield, has been appointed as Ambassador-at-Large for Sports and Cultural Achievement, by the Davis Administration. This is a major accomplishment recognizing, according to the Office of the Prime Minister, Hield’s outstanding journey from Eight Mile Rock, Grand Bahama to the NBA as well as his commitment to inspire Bahamians. Prime Minister Philip Davis speaking at his Credential Presentation, expressed great appreciation to Hield. He said “Thank you for being a shining example of what it means to be truly great, both on and off the court. Congratulations Ambassador.”
UNDP appoints new Resident Representative for The Bahamas
[Nassau, 6 February 2024] – The United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) newly appointed Resident Representative for The Bahamas, Kishan Khoday presented his credentials to Director General in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jerusa Ali yesterday at the Ministry.
As Resident Representative assigned to the UNDP Multi-Country Office in Jamaica, Mr. Khoday also represents UNDP in The Bahamas, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos Islands.
Mr. Khoday, a Canadian national of Indian descent, is currently leading a team from the Kingston office on the first leg of an official mission to The Bahamas and Bermuda. While in Nassau, he will also meet with Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Honourable Vaughn Miller; Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources, Honourable Jomo Campbell as well as other officials from the Office of the Prime Minister, Ministry of Finance; Ministry of Social Services and Community Development and the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities.
In welcoming the new Resident Representative, Ms Ali lauded significant areas of ongoing cooperation with the UNDP including disaster resilience and climate change adaptation and mitigation. She also outlined other key areas for potential collaboration related to digitization and data collection.
Mr. Khoday pledged continuing support for The Bahamas’ development aspirations anchored on an inclusive and sustainable approach that leaves no one behind. He lauded the significant partnership between UNDP and the Government on the nation’s disaster management, climate resilience, biodiversity and debt management agendas, as well as investments in community-based action through the UNDP-implemented GEF Small Grants Programme and the India-funded Abaco Shelter project. He said that through the current Country Programme (CP)(2022-2026), UNDP offers a strategic approach to combating multidimensional poverty and advancing climate resilient, nature-based pathways, leveraging UNDP’s capacities in innovation, digitalization, and sustainable finance. “As we near the 50th anniversary of UNDP cooperation in The Bahamas, I look forward to building on our long-standing history and expanding cooperation in a way that builds resilience to multi-dimensional crises and advances results under the SDGs. This includes our partnerships for social inclusion and community empowerment; climate resilience and biodiversity, disaster management and sustainable finance,” he stated.
Mr. Khoday has served with UNDP for 25 years, having coordinated over USD $1 billion in country programming to help partners and communities around the world advance inclusive and sustainable development pathways. This included tours of duty with UNDP Country Offices in China, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia and with UNDP’s regional offices for the Middle East and North Africa based in Egypt and Jordan. Prior to joining the UN, Mr. Khoday worked with government and community organizations in his home countries of Canada and India on issues of poverty reduction, ecological resilience, and community empowerment.
Mr. Khoday is a scientist and lawyer, holding a Juris Doctorate specializing in constitutional, international, and environmental law; a Master of Science in natural resource management focused on land and water systems, and a Bachelor of Science in agriculture specializing in biodiversity and ecological change. The UNDP Resident Representative is a frequent speaker at international conferences and policy dialogues on the development agenda and a recognized thought leader on strategic issues such as climate change, ecosystem resilience, constitutionalism, postcolonial and decolonial theory, and resilience-based approaches to development, having published extensively on these and other issues.
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