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Youths capture Bequia history, traditions

Youths capture Bequia history, traditions


by Leah Belmar 16.NOV.07

As the older generation voices its dismay at the indifference of today’s youth toward the treasured mores that shaped its unique identity, a move to record and preserve the oral history and traditions of Bequia has recently been undertaken in a joint venture between two community youth groups on the island.{{more}}

The Paget Farm Sports, Cultural and Environmental Organization in partnership with the R.I.P.P.L.E.S. (Revival of Important Principles and Practices to Lessen Evil in Society) has embarked on a project which was supported by a grant from UNESCO within the framework of their Youth Visioning for Island Living.

Their assignment over the past ten months was to purchase a video camera and train the young people to use it for planning, organizing and videotaping a minimum of five local traditions. The traditions chosen included farine production, corn grinding, salting and drying of fish, the use of traditional medicine and grinding of coarse salt. The Agency for Public Information assisted with technical advice.

Storytelling itself is one of the important aspects of island living and the youth were not disappointed in the quality of the stories that were imparted by their elders, as local viewers of television will see in the upcoming airing of the video production entitled “Folkways of Bequia”. The audio portion of the interviews is expected to be aired on the Bequia radio station shortly. This promises to be a valuable source of research as the National Archives will be a recipient of a copy of the production.

There is still much more to learn after this first production is completed and these budding journalists possess a powerful tool to call attention to people and issues in their society that otherwise would go unnoticed.