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Notting Hill Carnival 2006

We are in the first week of March which is recognized as Women’s History Month but there are many people around the region who would not have paid attention to this very important celebration.

For some of us there is still a small matter of getting over the Haiti earthquake disaster, followed so quickly by another in Chile. Meanwhile, there is the ongoing concern over the prevailing drought conditions.

The irony of this entire setting is that women will have to play an important role in ensuring that all of the societies spoke of above get over the hurdles they are facing and are able to move to the next level of reconstruction or development.

The fact is, there have been lots remarkable strong women who would have and who still continue to give sterling service to the their country and race.

Women like our very own Dame Eugenia Charles (former Prime Minister of Dominica) or Miss Universe Wendy Fitzwilliams, Miss World Jennifer Hosten of Grenada, and athletes like Merle Ottey must be allowed to retain top spots as women who have done much and who are deserving of having their names in a special bracket of Caribbean life.

The responsibility is on this generation to ensure that many of our great Caribbean women are spoken and written about and place in areas of spotlight that will let everyone know who they are and why they have been elevated.

And what is it that we say? That charity begins at home?

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On 11 July 2009, people around the world observed the 20th World Population Day in different ways; in Dominica the celebration was distinctively muted.

We lost an excellent opportunity to start to create meaningful change in the lives of our women but it’s never be too late to create a positive movement in relation to this.

The theme “Investing in our women and girls,” should have given the opportunity to several individuals and groups to highlight the accomplishments of outstanding women in their respective communities and at least create a start to a platform that would encourage better treatment for our girls and women, while a the same time challenging them to excel in various spheres of Caribbean living.

Investing in girls’ education delivers well-known returns. When girls are educated, they are more likely to earn higher wages and obtain better jobs, to have fewer and healthier children and to enjoy safer childbirth. Investing in women’s health, especially reproductive health, can not only save the lives of half a million mothers, but also unleash an estimated $15 billion in productivity each year.

It’s time for our decision-makers to begin protecting women’s ability to earn income, keep their daughters in school, and obtain reproductive health information and services, including voluntary family planning.

Together, let us empower women as highly productive members of society, capable of contributing to our country economic recovery and growth.

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Women Lapeau Kabwit Band at Dominica carnival 2008 opening parade

The French Lapeau Kabwit Band (all women) entertaining the Dominican crowd at the 2008 Dominica Carnival official opening parade. These ladies love their carnival and they can definitely play :!:…Photo by: TropicallyTied

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