Diversity workshop to foster unity in East Bank villages

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, July 5, 2018

A recent workshop has taught residents from several East Bank of Demerara communities about diversity and inclusion so as to help them foster unity within their communities.

The workshop, which was held at the Providence National Stadium, saw residents from Friendship, Craig, Supply, Good-Success, Eccles and Caledonia taking part. It is also part of the Ministry of Social Cohesion’s mission to foster a united Guyana by building better relationships within communities. Three participants, Shermin Blair, Gerrod Lamazon and Donia Stanislaus said that they will use what they have learnt to make their villages better.

Blair, who hails from Supply and is also a nurse, said: “We did a lot about behavioural studies, values, prejudice, we also touched on activities that make us more in touch with ourselves as individuals and it shows how culture and diversity is very important in our society today.”

“The workshop is very informative. I can say what I take back from this to my community is that you learn not to be prejudiced, you learn the value of what it means to be human and most of all it is really it is a sensitisation of what social cohesion is about,” said Lamazon from Friendship.

Stanislaus, who is a resident of Craig, told DPI that she attended the workshop with an open mind and that she “learnt quite a lot… I learnt not to be prejudiced, I learnt the values of being a human being and what I learnt here I can take back to my community because I plan to help from the old to the very young.”

Technical Officer to the Ministry Olive Gopaul said while the workshop targeted community citizens, institutions were also involved. She said the move is in keeping with the ministry’s plan to mainstream social cohesion. Gopaul highlighted that it will ultimately help in the delivery of services to Guyanese.

“We talk a lot about diversities and if those diversities are not properly managed, sometimes, we allow our own personal sentiments to get in the way of how we do our work,” Gopaul stated.

She added that when the workshop concludes, the participants will be tasked with formulating projects that will benefit their respective communities. “They now have to propose projects which they will implement in their respective areas. Those projects will be based on a need within a village …”

The sensitisation exercises are ongoing in communities countrywide.

By: Isaiah Braithwaite.

Images: Karime Peters.