Exhibitors grateful for return of Amerindian Heritage Month activities

Amerindian exhibitors from hinterland communities capitalised on the return of the annual Amerindian Heritage Month- Arts, Craft and Cuisine Exhibition.

Guyanese from various ethnic groups flooded the Sophia Exhibition Centre on Saturday to enjoy the art, craft and cuisines of the Amerindian community, as celebrations for Amerindian Heritage Month continue.

Craft on display

This year’s heritage month is being celebrated under the theme ‘‘Celebrating our traditional culture while building One Guyana’.

DPI interacted with several exhibitors from Amerindian villages in Regions One, Three, Five and Nine who expressed gratitude for the timely return of the exhibition to display their culture while earning a living.

Leomi Willis

Leomi Willis from Mabaruma, Region One said she is proud to be an Amerindian as she showcased her craft.

“I born in this right, this is my culture I am from the Arawak and Warau tribe and I am really proud of knowing my culture. I am so happy to be an Amerindian.”

She lauded the government for the continuous strides and initiatives being implemented for the betterment of Amerindians.

“As a government, I am so happy they are trying and I think they can do even more for us being the first people on this land. So, I am so grateful for having them.”

Another exhibitor, Roland Taylor from Rupertee, Region Nine has been making ornaments from hard woods such as purple heart and powering a conservation of the region for 35 years.

Roland Taylor

Taylor said he has been participating in expos from the start and was anxiously awaiting the return.

“Since in 1985, I think that was the first exhibition it had at the Umani Yana that is what I can remember. So, since then I have started attending the heritage exhibition. I feel good right I feel like ohh it come back because actually everybody was waiting for it and so it come back and I feel good.”

This year makes it five years since Mackernol Albert from Paruima village, Region Seven has been attending the Heritage month exhibition.

Mackernol Albert

“I use to come and get change and thing, but after two years I have been like I have been punishing.  Now I feel good to come here because I getting little sales, getting lil pocket piece and I feel very happy about that.”

Martina Samuels from Santa Mission, Region Three said “Over ten years I have been coming to this exhibition but as you know for the past 2 years, we didn’t have this because of the pandemic. I feel good that we could be out here to exhibit our product what we made and I think it’s good.”

Art on display

She stated that the PPP/C Administration has been addressing the concerns of all races as one.

“The government, he is looking out for everyone, everyone. It’s not for one he looks out for everybody as I can see.”

Viola Clinton from Maraikobai, Region Five shared similar sentiments.

“I feel thankful for the government with whatever he is trying to do for us and I know he has everybody at heart and everybody tradition. I really feel proud about it. He is an all-round person and he does try to reach everybody I feel good about him.”

Amerindian delicacy

September was declared Amerindian Heritage Month, in 1995 by former President Dr Cheddi Jagan, in honour of Guyana’s first Amerindian Parliamentarian Stephen Campbell, who became a member of parliament on September 10, 1957, and to honour the contributions of the country’s first people.