Tag Archives: International

Engaging the Jamaican Diaspora

So many exciting initiatives are taking place in the Caribbean and I have had a virtual information feast finding out about it all from coast to coast! I am excited to share information on a Conference that will be taking place in Jamaica  around better engaging the Diaspora population to contribute to the development of the country.
This proud Jamaican displays his merchandise. Taken at Cross Roads, Kingston
This proud Jamaican displays his merchandise. Taken at Cross Roads, Kingston

The MacMillan dictionary defines Diaspora (/daɪˈæsp(ə)rə/) as, the movement of a large group of people from their home country to other countries in the world

Statistics seem to show for instance that the numbers of Jamaicans and Guyanese living in the diaspora is probably equal to, if not more than the population living within the country. In fact the IOM (International Organisation on Migration) is currently (Guyana) or will be supporting (Jamaica) these two countries’ efforts to map the skills and investment interests within their diaspora populations. (For more on these two initiatives, please visit these two links: Jamaica to establish database of overseas professionals & Guyana Diaspora Project).

Well here is information for an upcoming fora where the Jamaican diaspora can get involved:

Looking on in Half Way tree Jamaica
Looking on in Half Way tree Jamaica

Jamaica Diaspora Conference 2013 (June 2013)

The Biennial Jamaica – Diaspora Conference, convened by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, is the global forum that connects Jamaicans from all over the world with Jamaicans in the home country every two years. The event seeks to strengthen existing linkages and networks, and to build alliances for Jamaica’s development and standing in the world (Extract from website).

Why, you may wonder, all this attention to the diaspora population? Well it is estimated that remittances make up some 17% of GDP and diaspora tourists may constitute some 11-15% of overall visitors. Further Professor Neville Ying, Executive Director of the Jamaica Diaspora Institute (JDI), estimates that there are possibly more than 187 Diaspora organisations that make significant contributions to Jamaica in the areas of health, education, sports, investment etc.

It is precisely because of the recognition of this value and potential that the Jamaica Diaspora Foundation and its operating arm – Jamaica Diaspora Institute was established in 2009. Visit Maximising the value of the diaspora to Jamaica’s sustainable development for more.

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International Day to End Violence against Women

Female genital mutilation, Slavery, trafficking, incest, rape, battery. These are just a few of the horrors many women in the world face. Today is International Day to End Violence Against Women. Let me introduce you first to two women who have told their stories. Prego and the Loon tells her story of surviving an abusive relationship. Stella Marr tells her story of being domestically trafficked in New York for 10 years on The Secret Life of a Manhattan Call Girl.

Secondly, I am asking you to share this blog post immediately. The act of spreading awareness is no small thing!

Let’s end it!

Thirdly, take your time and read these statistics. This is how real violence against women is:

  • Three Caribbean countries are among the top 10 for reported incidences of rape. All Caribbean countries (where comparable data is available) have higher than the global average for rape. One in three women in the Caribbean on average will experience domestic violence (UN Women Caribbean)
  • Nearly 20% of women in New Hampshire say they have been raped. (NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, University of New Hampshire, and state authorities, 2007)
  • In Seoul, Korea, 22% of adult women said they had been the victims of rape and attempted rape (UNIFEM)
  • In a survey in South Africa, 25% of the young men admitted to having had sex with a woman without her consent, before he was 18 years of age (Human Rights Watch)
  • Domestic violence is the major cause of death and disability for European women aged 16 to 44 and accounts for more death and ill-health than cancer or traffic accidents. (reported by Amnesty International)
  • In Barbados, a national survey of women and men aged 20 to 45 found that 33 per cent of women and 2 per cent of men reported having been sexually abused during childhood. (UNFPA)
Say NO to Violence against Women!

In her message for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet calls for bold action and decisive leadership to galvanize efforts to end the pandemic of violence against women and girls.

As a  future mother I am imploring us to get involved and stop being bystanders to such violence. I do not have all the answers, but please find an Agency in your area where you can volunteer or learn more. To the women who are victims, I pray that you have the courage to get up and walk away. Please revisit Prego and the Loon’s blog. See how she did it.

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