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Welcome Baby Project Launched with SMMC and Rotary Mid Isle Club

CAY HILL - On Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 nurses of the St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) collaborated with Rotarians of the Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle to officially launch the baby bags in their “Welcome Baby” project.

The launch included a presentation by Rotarian Denise Antrobus, Rotarian Anjali Manek, and Nurse St. Cyr of the OB/GYN ward, who started the “Welcome Baby” initiative to support new mothers in need, as part of her objectives for this year.

The presentation informed the invited guests about the project in detail, and also allowed both organizations to present a “Welcome Baby” bag to the first official new mom in the project.

This particular bag that the new mom received, was sponsored by Mid Isle President Veronica Jansen-Webster, Domino’s Pizza, Bebe n’ Kids, Penny’s Department Store and Divico.

A District Grant was received through ‘The Rotary Foundation’, which is the charitable arm of Rotary International, to offset the start-up costs of this project. Through this grant and the valued contributions by the generous sponsors mentioned the additional “Welcome Baby” bags are made possible. The bags are filled with the all the essentials a new mom will need for the new bundle of joy.

Projects like these highlight amazing ways the public can collaborate with our local hospital to support the community. “Welcome Baby” represents a way of giving back to the community for both organizations.

For Nurse St. Cyr the objective was to promote the well-being of patients and through this joint effort she hopes to be able to offer positive experiences to the new moms. However, the bags will not be available to every mother.

The baby bags are intended for those who need it the most. The chosen new mothers will receive a bag at the discretion of the nurses who work closely with them, and who have gotten to understand their individual stories.

The “Welcome Baby” project is still in its initial stages, and the hope is for other’s within the community to join in the great effort of the concerning organizations.

For the Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle being part of the official launch was an ideal opening to their theme for the month of April, which will be ‘Maternal and Child’ month for the club. The Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle meets Tuesday at 7pm at Mary’s Boone in Simpson Bay. For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our face book page Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle.

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SINT MAARTEN BECOMES #2 CARIBBEAN, #19 WORLDWIDE DESTINATION

PHILIPSBURG - This Tuesday, TripAdvisor has congratulated Sint Maarten / Saint Martin on a achieving the #2 position as a Caribbean destination, and #19th worldwide. According to the company, the sharp increase was the result of a shared Sint Maarten Tourist Board and Sint Maarten Hospitality and Trade Association (SHTA) campaign starting in 2016.

Both parties were contacted by TripAdvisor to share the excellent results. TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice (TC) Awards are based on millions of personal reviews from the world’s most popular travel community. The awards recognize exceptional properties and destinations. Winning the award is achieved by a combination of popularity, comments by visitors and overall ranking on TripAdvisor. TripAdvisor is the largest peer-to-peer travel site in the world allowing travelers to comment about their experiences and recommendations.

In 2016, the Sint Maarten Hospitality and Trade Association (SHTA) launched a public-private partnership with the Sint Maarten Tourist Board last year to boost social media traffic for the island.  The awards were granted based on increasing traffic coming from the island, reinforced by further combined efforts with Expedia, USA Today.  SHTA is grateful for the close cooperation with the Tourist Board and hopes to be able to continue this Sint Maarten social media team for years to come.

Winning the award increases a destination’s visibility within media. The TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Awards receive large press coverage across respected news outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, CNN, Fox News, NBC, ABC News, USA Today, The Huffington Post and many others. Just in the US, TripAdvisor was cited in 6100 news articles over the past year.

However very happy that destination Sint Maarten now ranks this high globally, SHTA stresses the importance that 21st century online marketing only keeps flourishing by continuous effort. High rankings have been the result of both the Sint Maarten Tourist Board as well as SHTA fully engaging in the digital marketing effort. To keep Sint Maarten having high rankings, it is very important to keep the effort continued at the same pace and invest in 21st communications.

The SHTA, the largest business representative on the island, is dedicated to bring quality to all aspects of life on St. Maarten by promoting sustainable economic development for its members in cooperation with the social partners and the creation of a fair marketplace. For more information, please contact the SHTA office: 542-0108, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website www.shta.com

sxm tripadvisor hotels inside

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Annual Lion Rudy Hoeve Health & Wellness Fair 2K17 set for Saturday

PHILIPSBURG - All is set for the St. Maarten Lions Club 9th annual “Lion Rudy Hoeve Health & Wellness Fair 2K17” which is scheduled for this coming Saturday March 25th from 9am to 4pm at the Festival Village.

Twenty five (25) stakeholders involved in health care, health care prevention and wellness on the St. Maarten have signed up with the St. Maarten Lions Club to provide the general public with several health tests, examinations, presentations, lectures and general health care and wellness information.

Diabetes Foundation has been with the Lions Health and Wellness Fair from the very beginning and will again be carrying out free Blood Pressure, Glucose, Cholesterol tests, and all other test related to diabetes. Once again this year the foundation is flying in the Podiatrist from Curacao who will be carrying out treatment of the diabetic feet.

Last year at the fair the Podiatrist treated numerous bad diabetic feet and the foundation is inviting all diabetics to make use of this very important treatment free of charge. The Diabetes Foundation is also urging persons to come early as the Podiatrist will only be present from 9am to 2pm. Persons do not need to fast before their examinations, so they may have their regular breakfast.

Aids Foundation is also a major contributor to the fair ever since the beginning and will once again be carrying out the usual HIV/AIDS tests. WIEMS which stands for Windward Island Emergency Services will give information on their courses such as “Introduction of CPR”, “Demonstration on the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED)” and they will also display of their teaching equipment.

Positive Foundation has information for the general public on Breast Cancer Prevention.

Alpha Health Care has been with the Lions Health Fair for many years and once again they will be displaying many items such as diabetic shoes, compression stockings, mobility items, walkers, relaters, scooters, bathroom needs, blood pressure machines, diabetic meters and much more. Explanations will also be given on the many items which are covered by SZV and other private insurance companies.

Sickle Cell Foundation will be promoting awareness about Sickle Cell disease and encouraging the public to know their status. Brochures will be shared, advice will be given, and the SLS Lab will be conducting screening for those persons who are interested in the particular disease. The foundation will also be accepting membership applications on that day. Kidney Foundation is having a certified dialysis nurse who will be present to share information about dialysis, kidney failure, chronic kidney diseases and prevention. Important information will be distributed in the form flyers.

St. Maarten Alzheimer Foundation will be providing information on Alzheimer’s and other forms of Dementia as well as information to maintain a healthy brain. The public will have the opportunity to talk to an experienced professional nurse present at the fair as well as about “How to care for persons with Dementia”. The public will also have the opportunity to talk to family caregivers with experience. There will also be free memory testing which only takes 5 minutes.    

A newcomer to the Health & Wellness Fair is the St. Maarten Consumers Coalition which will provide information about their services, about the rights of the consumers to promote their health and well-being. They will also give information on the quality of the products, services and prices. Bio Magnetism is another new addition to the fair and anyone with a health issue will get the opportunity to scan one (1) tissue for 10 minutes. Demonstrations will also be given to test to see if a product is good or not for the person.

Enable Holistic Occupational Therapy has also been a long serving contributor to the Health Fair for many years. Holistic Occupational Therapist Mrs. D’Antoinette Roger-Sorton will be providing information on occupational therapy and providing experiences on what it’s like to live with different disabilities. She will and also be providing a look at specialty equipment.

There will also be three presentations which the general public should not miss.

Cardiologist Dr. Emiko Bird-Lake will speak at 10am on “High Blood Pressure and Stroke”. This is a very important presentation especially for persons suffering with high blood pressure. High blood pressure resulting in strokes is very prevalent on St. Maarten lately and those persons wanting to hear this presentation are requested to be at the Festival Village before 10am. SZV will be making two presentations starting at 12pm through to 3pm. Their first presentation will deal with ”Rights & Obligations of ZV insured (with a highlight on the Medical Coverage)”

The second presentation will deal with “Requirements & Procedure: Medical Reimbursement Claims”.

Vital Health Clinic’s Dietitian Ms. Jeshneila Carti will be giving valuable information on dieting.

St. Maarten Foundation for Psychologists and Orthopedagogen will offer parent’s trainings to help restore parental authority. They look forward to hearing from the community at the fair and share information with them as well. Nature’s Discount will bring to the public general information on men, women and children’s health. The public will also be able to taste items from their organic juicing and health conscious kitchen, and they will have items to give away.

Physiotherapist Angeli Balani will be sharing information on physical therapy for all sorts of illnesses. Henderson Insurances will again be part of the fair this year and they will be explaining to the public about preparing for retirement and choosing a good pension plan while Martijn Trading will be displaying various health care products.

I & I Fitness Gym will have their clients, young and old (especially the Senior Citizens) demonstrate their ability with various exercises. Mrs. Sarah Wescot-Williams will also be present with her Zumba Group giving performances and inviting all Zumba dancers to join her at 10am to be part of the demonstrations that the group will be giving while some additional potential stake holders are busy finalizing their participation at the Lion Rudy Hoeve Health & Wellness Fair in the coming days.

This year the St. Maarten Lions Club will be keeping a count of the number of persons attending the fair and upon entering the Village everyone will receive a floor plan with information on where each stakeholder is located and which booth number.

All stakeholders have been asked to compile a report of the day’s proceedings where it pertains to the number of persons who visited their booth and they will also report extraordinary alarming health situations mentioning only numbers and no details on individuals. The St. Maarten Lions Club will then send a general report of the entire Health & Wellness Fair to the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labor for its review.

The St. Maarten Lions Club are extremely happy to once more offer this very valuable Health & Wellness Fair to the general public of St. Maarten whereby all tests, examinations, presentations will be free of charge.

For additional information about the St. Maarten Lions Club about their fundraising and community projects, you can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit their Facebook page.  

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25 – 25 – 25 The Final Ticket Sale Promotion for Carnival’s Flagship Show, TelCell Night Of The Hit Makers

MIDDLE REGION, On Saturday March 25th at 12:25pm in the afternoon, St. Maarten’s fans driven event organizer, Xtratight Entertainment is giving fans and patrons who missed its 5th Year Anniversary ticket special one last chance to purchase tickets for Carnival’s Flagship Show, TelCell Night Of The Hit Makers at a greatly reduced price of $25,- a press release from the organizers on Wednesday said.

Tickets will only be sold at TelEm branch located at Le Grand Marche on a first come first served basis. The first 25 persons will get 1 free top-up card courtesy of TelCell.

The 25-25-25 ticket promotion is part of Xtratight’s effort in making tickets more affordable for families and groups of persons seeking to purchase multiple tickets.

Bertaux ‘Mr Rude’ Fleming: It was not our intention to bring back this special given the magnitude of the show and artist rooster. I heard the cry from our fans and patrons that missed out on the pervious opportunity, so by popular demand we decided to bring it back one more time. The last time we did this we had a sell-out of the number of tickets that were reserved for the reduced price promotion, I am advising everyone to line up early if they have to, for the 25-25-25 ticket special to make use of this great deal. After this tickets are $30,- while supplies last and $40,- on the day of the show.

The special is for one hour only starting promptly on 12:25pm and ending at 1:25 pm sharp – unless all tickets are sold out before the allotted time.  One person can only purchase a maximum amount of 5 tickets.

The Hit Makers 5th Year anniversary promises to be a show never to be forgotten, with the ultimate dance experience in the largest outdoor disco setting on the island, featuring some super-hot Caribbean artistes, amongst whom is a re-energized Destra, Kai formerly known as Carimi, Claudius Philips, Farmer Nappy, Jean Marc Ferdinand and St. Maartens very own Imapkt Band.

Partners: TelCell, Accessible Ventures, Heineken, Johnny Walker, Kooyman, SOS Radio, Genesis Music Group, Simpson bay Resort, Domio’s Pizza and Pawa Airline.

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BBC Travel to feature St. Maarten to millions of viewers worldwide

PHILIPSBURG - In a few weeks, St. Maarten, will be featured on the most watched travel show in Europe and seen by potentially a quarter-of-a-billion people across the globe.  The BBC Travel Show sent a crew to the island recently to cover the SXM Music Festival. While on island, contact was made with the St. Maarten Tourism Bureau and an interview setup with its new Head Rolando Brison.

In the interview with the BBC, Brison was asked about the destination’s tourism product, about the uniqueness of the airport and about the SXM Music Festival that they came to cover and how it fits into the tourism product. The BBC Travel Show utilizes a network of correspondents in London, Tokyo, Sydney, New York and Kuala Lumpur and the program aims to provide unique insight into the world of travel.

The 30-minute episode about SXM Music Festival show will be broadcasted within the next 3 to 4 weeks to a major portion of the 265 million direct subscribers of the BBC channels that broadcast the show, plus many other affiliates around the world as well as potentially millions of views more across YouTube and social media.

Since the BBC typically does not play any paid advertisements, the only way to get advertising on their network is through programming. With the value of a national television one minute ad being over US $300,000, the exposure St. Maarten will receive from the SXM Music Festival episode is more than 2 to 4 million euros potentially, based on how many viewers will ultimately watch the show.

"The island just got a huge boost of European and global advertising through the BBC's decision to send The Travel Show to cover St. Maarten and the SXM Music Festival. I was proud to tell the world about why St. Maarten needs to be the next place they visit for a great vacation in a place that we expect they will fall in love with," Brison said.  

"We will continue to make efforts to attract such high-profile media to the destination either by means of our marketing agencies, or through the support for major events like Heineken Regatta, St. Maarten Carnival and now SXM Festival who do such a great job bringing top notch media coverage to our destination,” he added.

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Head of the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau Rolando Brison being interviewed by the BBC Travel Show.

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Chief of Police John expects Police Officers and Civil Servants to also Comply with the Law on Tinted Windows

PHILIPSBURG - The Chief Police is informing the general public that he has taken note of the press release that was sent out Public Prosecutors Office on March 20th regarding the controls on motor vehicles with dark tinted windows to be conducted by police, a press release from the Police Force Public Relations Department said on Tuesday.

“This information was immediately communicated internally to all officers as well as other civil-servants working within the department and that they should immediately have the tint removed from their vehicles removed if that is the case.

“The chief will not condone the breaking of the law by any member of the police force and does not believe that anyone is above the law. The measures that have been taken are to improve the safety and security of everyone.

“Disciplinary actions will be taken against those officers or civil servants who do not comply with these instructions with possibility of that officer or civil servant receiving a fine,” the press release concludes.

 

Vehicle windows must have 70 or more percentage visibility

PHILIPSBURG - Vehicles on St. Maarten with tinted driver’s window, front passenger’s window and windshield must have up 70 or more per cent visibility, according to the law regulating tinted vehicles, a joint press release from the Public Prosecution Service and the Sint Maarten Police Force said on Tuesday.

“The exact text of this law states: ‘There should be a 70 per cent transmittance of light.’ The Prosecutor’s Office hereby clarifies the press release issued on Monday related to the tint regulation and the start of control to enforce the existing regulation.

“Monday’s release incorrectly stated that the windshield and front windows may be tinted only up to 15 per cent. This clarification is issued in response to the many questions posed to the Prosecutor's Office and Police by concerned residents who wanted to ensure they were adhering to the law and no incur any fine in the road controls.

“Motorists are urged to ensure their vehicles are in accordance with the. Motorists who are not compliant with the legislation will be fined and will have to remove the tint on the stop in the presence of police,” the press release concludes.

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NIPA LPN students visit the St. Maarten Senior Citizens Recreational Center

HOPE ESTATE - On March 21st the National Institute for Professional Advancement (NIPA) Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) students accompanied by their instructor Nichelle Van der Mark, visited the St. Maarten Senior Citizens Recreational Center in Hope Estate.

The students went from 9:00 am to 11:00 am, dressed in bright pink and white; a dress code which the students came up with, to bring an atmosphere of brightness and cheer to the center.

The visit was a part of the “Caring for the Elderly” subject which gave students hands on experience in this area. Students participated in playing games, as well as the morning devotion.

The elderly were so disappointed to see them go, that students are planning to revisit the center in the near future.

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Oral Health is Vital for Overall Health

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – The department Collective Prevention Services (CPS) of the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (Ministry VSA), said on Monday that March 20 marked World Oral Health Day, adding that oral health is vital for overall health.  The theme for 2017 is: “Live Mouth Smart.”

World Oral Health Day is an international day to celebrate the benefits of a healthy mouth and to promote worldwide awareness of the issues around oral health and the importance of looking after oral hygiene to everyone old and young.

Healthy teeth, gums and mouths are things people tend to take for granted until they no longer have them. Experts say this is unfortunate because good habits and regular check-ups can prevent most oral health problems, and these are more likely to occur if people are fully aware of the importance of oral health.

Nine out of 10 people around the world are at risk of some form of oral disease, ranging from tooth decay and gum disease to oral cancer.

Prevention begins in childhood, yet even in developed countries, from 60% to 90% of school-aged children have dental caries, according to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

One of the most serious forms of oral disease is oral cancer, whose major risk factors are tobacco and alcohol use and the human papillomavirus (HPV).

Dental professionals can play an important role in early detection by examining patients for signs of oral cancer during check-ups.

In the Americas, the burden of oral disease has declined significantly since 1980, thanks in large part to public health interventions including salt and water fluoridation and the use of simple yet effective technologies for oral health care.

Oral disease can be prevented through healthy habits including: Brushing teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste; Using dental floss every day; Rinsing daily with fluoride mouthwash; Having regular dental check-ups for both children and adults; Avoiding soft drinks, artificial juices and energy drinks; Avoiding sweets, candies and starchy snacks; Avoiding junk foods; Avoiding tobacco products and alcohol.

For more information on Oral Health Care, you can reach CPS at 542-3003 or 542-2078.

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5,318 traffic fines processed by Prosecutor’s Office in 2016

PHILIPSBURG - The Prosecutor Office (OM) St. Maarten made traffic safety a priority in 2016 and processed a total of 5,318 fines for traffic violations and violations at sea, according to a press release on Monday from the OM.

These penalties were issued by the St. Maarten Police Force (KPSM) and the Coast Guard.

“This is an increase of 42 per cent of the total fines issued in 2015. Of the 5,318 fines issued a total of 3,759 (Ed: went) in front of the judge. This is an increase of 894 (31 percent).

“The other transactions were not brought in front of the judge because they were paid by the offenders before the hearing date. The top 5 offenses for which fines have been issued are: - Driving without seat belt (1,111) - Driving without a license (955)/Driving without being able to prove one has a license (604) - Driving without insurance (667) - Calling while driving (646) - Driving without paying road tax (on time) (567).

“Also in 2017 KPSM will be collaborating with the Prosecutor’s Office to ensure more road safety. So more traffic controls will be carried out with an emphasis on: - Uninsured driving; - Tinted car windows; - Driving without a license; - Compliance of agreements regarding cement trucks.”

Each quarter of a year multidisciplinary integrated controls will be carried out in addition to traffic controls which will be held at the border in collaboration with the Gendarmerie.

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CARIBE WAVE 2017 Exercise takes place on Tuesday. Four Timeshare Resorts taking part in Exercise

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – The CARIBE WAVE annual tsunami exercise of the United Nations Educational Scientific Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Tsunami and Other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions, will take place on Tuesday, March 21.

The Fire Department and Office of Disaster Management will be taking part including several hotel resorts that are part of the St. Maarten Timeshare Association.

The participating resorts are: Flamingo Beach Resort, Royal Palm Beach Resort, Oyster Bay Beach Resort and La Vista Resort.

The participating resorts will carry out an evacuation of the ground and lower level floors at their facilities.  The exercise entails that a three meter tsunami wave would impact coastal areas of the country.

The exercise objective is for countries, emergency management stakeholders and communities at risk, to test validate and update their tsunami response plans.

For CARIBE WAVE 2017 three different scenarios will be simulated. Each country will choose the one that best fits their objectives.

The first scenario simulates a magnitude 7.9 earthquake generated off the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. The second scenario is an 8.2 magnitude earthquake off the Southeastern coast of Cuba.

The third scenario is a magnitude 8.5 earthquake northeast of the Lesser Antilles which Sint Maarten will be taking part in this exercise. 

Each one of the 48 countries and territories members of CARIBE EWS will decide the level of participation and coordinate the corresponding activities within their jurisdiction.

Sint Maarten is a member state of the Intergovernmental Coordination Group for Tsunami and Other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (Intergovernmental Coordinating Group/CARIBE EWS), which is one of United National Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) bodies.

The ICG CARIBE EWS is the regional mechanism that visions to install tsunami preparation in the region by education, information and cooperation.

The Office of Disaster Management and Fire Department that falls under the Ministry of General Affairs. 

ICG/CARIBE EWS was established in 2005 as a subsidiary body of the IOC-UNESCO (Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission-United Nations Educational, Scientific, Cultural Organization) with the purpose of providing efficient assistance on tsunami risk reduction to Member States in the Caribbean region after the lessons learnt from the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

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