‘COMING OF AGE’ launch: Programme Director Mr Francis Lewis during his presentation yesterday. (Cullen Bess-Nelson photo)
Three persons from a selected 15 will be given the Anthony N. Sabga Caribbean Award for Excellence Gold Medal and Citation, US$80,000 and the opportunity for visibility, encouragement and support across the Caribbean and beyond when the award ceremony is held in Trinidad and Tobago on October 07, 2006.
The award is designed to publicly recognise, reward, support and encourage excellence in human endeavours that benefit and uplift the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the company said.
Programme Director Mr. Francis Lewis said persons from all CARICOM countries will be considered for selection.
The first regional, non-governmental recognition programme, Lewis said, it represents “a coming of age” with Caribbean people recognising their own.
Besides Guyana, this inaugural programme is being held in Jamaica, Grenada, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, and St Kitts & Nevis. It is expected that the programme will later be expanded to include The Bahamas, Belize, Suriname and Haiti.
The awards will be made in Arts and Letters, including those working in visual arts, performing arts, music, dance and theatre. Composers, writers and poets, and theatrical directors and producers are also to be honoured.
Another category for awards includes those involved in technology and scientific research to address practical human and community needs.
Then there is an award for public and civic contributions by persons who work directly to improve their communities and the lives of Caribbean people. It includes those who pioneer Non-Governmental Organisations.
Awards for media and sport are to be instituted shortly.
To be eligible for the award, candidates must demonstrate
** A track record of consistently superior work that has demonstrated excellence, leadership and pioneership
** The capacity for significant future achievement
** That work has had, or is likely to have, a positive impact in the Caribbean region.
To identify eligible candidates, five Country Nomination Committees (CNC) in Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), will be established.
According to Lewis, it is the responsibility of each country committee to identify, evaluate and recommend three candidates from their country for the award.
The CNC should be multi-disciplinary across the various award categories, and the panel must represent a balance of age, experience, gender and ethnicity, reflecting the diversity of the country and the region, he outlined.
Nominators are expected to bring to the selection process a broad Caribbean perspective in proposing and considering candidates.
The names of the CNC members will be held confidentially until completion of the selection process, so they may proceed with their work without undue interference or pressure. On completion of the selection process, their names will be made public.
The country committee comprising of 12 persons should be established by next month.
The final selection of the awardees lies with the Regional Eminent Persons Selection Panel which has nine members.
They are: Sir Ellis Clarke; Dr Wahid Ali; Mrs Judy Chang; Mr Justice Blackman; Mr Christopher Bovell; Sir Shridath Ramphal; Mr Michael Mansoor; Sr Paul D’Ornellas and Sir K. Dwight Venner.
The programme is sponsored by the Ansa McAl Foundation, created in 1993 by the merger of its two heritage foundations. In their commitment to addressing social needs, their achievements over the years include establishing the ANSA McAL Psychological Research Centre at the University of the West Indies (UWI), St Augustine, and the national home for the Trinidad and Tobago Association for the Deaf.
The foundation is chaired by Anthony Sabga.