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Port St. Maarten World Class Cruise Destination Sailing into Opportunities for Another 55-Years

PORT ST. MAARTEN – On June 3rd, 2019, Port St. Maarten celebrates 55-years of cruise. It was June 3rd, 1964, that the A.C. Wathey Pier in Point Blanche was inaugurated. Thereafter, over a period of 16-years cruise tourism slowly started to grow as the global cruise industry started to develop and in 1980 the island welcomed 105,000 cruise passengers.

As the industry continued to grow, the destination hit the one millionth cruise passenger mark in 2002 and thereafter has catered to more than a million cruise passengers for the past 17-years.

The development of the harbor facilities over the past 55-years started off with one company and now encompasses 13 companies with over 70 employees responsible for most of the country’s maritime-related activities. The operations are also broken down into four pillars, namely Cruise, Cargo, Yachting and Real Estate.

The Port St. Maarten Group of Companies has diversified its activities into real estate ownership and port consultancy as well as owning and operating the port’s two mobile harbor cranes.

55-years later, St. Maarten is a successful cruise destination. This is due to its approach of listening to the cruise lines and understanding the business which has grown by leaps and bounds.

“In 1964 with the construction of the A.C. Wathey Pier, the tourism visionary Dr. A.C. Wathey saw the opportunities that tourism would bring to the destination. June 3rd, 1964 saw the island sail into the opportunity of cruise tourism, and today we are one of the top cruise destinations in this part of the Caribbean.

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate past political leadership, port management, supervisory boards, port staff, our cruise industry partners and stakeholders for their roles that they have played in the development of cruise tourism St. Maarten over the past 55-years with respect to this momentous occasion.

“For the next 55-years, we look forward to taking Port St. Maarten to the next level with improvements to our infrastructure such as the cruise piers, the cruise terminal, a permanent structure for home porting and by extension the entire destination as we move forward,” Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications Hon. Stuart Johnson said on Sunday.

St. Maarten today understands the industry so well that it has become the destination of choice. This is due to offering quality and memorable land experiences for its cruise guests. The destination has been proactive which has kept it in the lead in the North Eastern Caribbean for more than five decades.

The turning point for Port St. Maarten was 24-years ago when Hurricane Luis (1995) caused devastation to the island’s infrastructure. After a period of planning and development, the first cruise pier, Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise Pier South (545 meters in length) capable of accommodating four cruise ships simultaneously, was put into operation in 2007, one of the few ports at that time that could receive the world’s largest cruise ships.

A second cruise pier, Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise Pier North (445 meters in length) was opened in 2009, allowing the Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise & Cargo Facility to cater to six cruise ships at the same time. This was then followed by the development of an upland retail (duty-free outlets, souvenir shops, market stalls), food and beverage commercial center at the port – Harbor Point Village – built in the traditional architectural style of old Philipsburg.

Investments were also made in Philipsburg with the upgrade of Front and Back Streets as well as the construction of the Great Beach Promenade. This was followed by the 760-meter Simpson Bay Causeway Bridge (2013) that would improve the transportation network contributing to a better visitor experience.

Additional investments were made in the enhancement of the Capt. Hodge Wharf in Philipsburg and the construction and inauguration of the Walter Plantz Square and tender jetty in 2015.

Within the past five decades, due to Port St. Maarten’s Supervisory Board and Managements strategic thinking and innovativeness, homeporting was pursued and has successfully been developed. With some of the best cruise facilities in the region, a number of boutique cruise lines with small luxury vessels of 100 – 500 passenger capacity, have used the opportunity offered by Port St. Maarten as a home port base. The destination financially benefits from home porting during the pre and post-stays. Between 20 to 25 per cent of home porting passengers stay on the island before and after their cruise.

The port provides the opportunity for fuel bunkering for mega and giga yachts as well as cruise lines. Cruise ship provisioning with dry and frozen goods have been put in place and the port aims to become the lead cruise ship provisioning seaport in the near future.

Investing in information technology systems and creating a more data centric environment, has also been a top priority for Port St. Maarten. Data traffic is playing an increasingly bigger role. To remain relevant and to be able to continue to improve upon the ports operational excellence and to remain a competitive destination, investments are required.

Digitalization of logistics is the future. Technology will radically change the way logistics are organized. As logistics become more complex, there is an increasing need to digitalize information streams. It will allow for optimization of current existing infrastructure, reducing the need to invest in additional infrastructure.

The planned introduction of the Port Community System (PCS) involves data-sharing among stakeholders and third parties covering cargo and cruise operations at the country’s seaport of entry. Port St. Maarten’s priority is security first, ensuring safe, secure use of Port Community Systems.

Besides investments in infrastructure and equipment and information technology, training of human resources at Port St. Maarten has also been at the top of the agenda for pilot boat operations and crane operators. The Port continues to invest in young local talent by inviting them to join the Port family, and continuous investment in existing personnel to optimize efficiency within the organization.

Port St. Maarten will be establishing a human resources training outpost. The training outpost will lead to the certification of persons working in the logistics field such as heavy equipment operators, stevedoring activities, and other port-container related operations.

The training Outpost Facility will be a key component to Port St. Maarten’s operational excellence platform ensuring quality and certified port operations across the board via establishing various audit models for continued improvement and success of Port St. Maarten cargo division and will also be used as a catalyst to use St. Maarten as a centralized training hub on a regional and international level.

Destination St. Maarten has maintained its competitive edge through continual research and development and strategic planning and the key partnerships with the cruise industry, stakeholders and leading players.

The cruise passenger destination experience score of 9.3 out of 10 is testament to the hard work and dedication from partners in the hospitality industry on St. Maarten which has resulted in a welcomed increase in positive reviews from cruise passengers.

Due to the dynamic growth that the country’s cruise industry has seen within the past 50+ -years, Port St. Maarten and destination stakeholders will be looking forward to hosting the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Platinum Associate Membership Advisory Council Cruise Summit (PAMAC) which will be taking place next week on the island.

The PAMAC 2019 Conference is expected to attract 150-200 delegates, all platinum members, and 10-15 cruise executives and top Chief Executive Officers.

PAMAC 2019 is an opportunity for all stakeholders to showcase to cruise line executives the recovery efforts over the past 20-months and to give a taste of what cruise guests enjoy while making memorable experiences on the island.

Port St. Maarten is prepared for the future of cruises and continues to sail into opportunities.

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Minister Lee celebrates success of Emergency Income Support and Training Program

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - The Emergency Income Support and Training Program (EISTP) has trained 1077 residents and has issued 1241 certifications since its commencement in February 2018. Minister Lee cheered the success of the program which is managed by the Sint Maarten Training Foundation, stating that these results not only showcase personal growth but subsequently better opportunities for the participants, and an overall better Sint Maarten product which helps our economy to grow and decreases the demand for foreign workers. The program will be extended to 2020, offering training to unemployed and underemployed until June 30th, 2020.

“This program is a prime example of excellent cooperation between the private sector and Government. The project is a role model for disaster recovery. As we continue to evaluate the program, we believe it is a good project that other countries can use as a model for disaster recovery. We have done so much work on the development of this program that if needed, the lead time to implement it again would be much shorter.”

The project aims to improve the employability of those unemployed and underemployed while strengthening the social protection system’s capacity for shock-response and protection of the poor. The program currently offers training in construction, hospitality, first aid, culinary arts, and casino tech. The Sint Maarten Training Foundation and the University of St. Maarten (USM) have come to an agreement whereas of May 20th the USM has started delivering training in English as a second language and as of June, culture and history will be added to the program as well.

Since the launch in 2018, the program has achieved a 93% success rate. A total of 1077 individuals were trained out of the target number of 1155 for 2018. As it relates to certification, 448 students were certified in hospitality, 98 in culinary ​arts, 85 in construction, 214 in first aid, 345 in customer service and 51 in Casino technical. It is important to note that students can choose to do multiple modules and be certified in multiple modules, hence the total number of certificates issued has been 1241.

The success of the program is widely celebrated. For the construction students, 90% have found jobs after the training and the majority of those who were underemployed and trained in the hospitality sector, have returned to work within their company. The feedback from the employers speaks to an increase in customer satisfaction after trained staff returned to the companies. Additionally, it is also reported that there is a change in the attitude of the trained staff, and they are better positioned for promotion within the company, some of which have actually received promotions. 

The program runs until June 30th, 2020, and all interested unemployed or underemployed (3 days of work or less) are welcomed. Enrolled students receive stipend​s and health insurance. For more information on the available opportunities or the courses, contact the Sint Maarten Training Foundation, on 520 -7574, or directly sign up via the Labour Affairs Office.

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CPS: Control Your Blood Pressure. Know your numbers

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – Hypertension, also known as high or raised blood pressure, is a condition in which the blood vessels have persistently raised pressure, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

“Blood is carried from the heart to all parts of the body in the vessels. Each time the heart beats, it pumps blood into the vessels.

“Blood pressure is created by the force of blood pushing against the walls of blood vessels (arteries) as it is pumped by the heart. The higher the pressure the harder the heart has to pump.” The heart has to work harder to pump the blood to all parts of the body.

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department in the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, is urging persons to get their blood pressure checked regularly to prevent heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and other serious health problems and to stay healthy. High blood pressure is a health condition monitored under Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).

The international theme is: “Know Your Numbers,” with the goal of increasing high blood pressure awareness and promote hypertension prevention, detection and control in all populations around the world.

Most people with hypertension have no symptoms at all; this is why it is known as the “silent killer”. Sometimes hypertension causes symptoms such as headache, shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain, palpitations of the heart and nose bleeds, but not always.

The higher the blood pressure, the higher the risk of damage to the heart and blood vessels in major organs such as the brain and kidneys. Hypertension is the most important preventable cause of heart disease and stroke worldwide.

If left uncontrolled, hypertension can lead to a heart attack, an enlargement of the heart and eventually heart failure. Blood vessels may develop bulges (aneurysms) and weak spots that make them more likely to clog and burst. The pressure in the blood vessels can cause blood to leak out into the brain and cause a stroke. Hypertension can also lead to kidney failure, blindness, and cognitive impairment.

The health consequences of hypertension can be compounded by other factors that increase the odds of heart attack, stroke and kidney failure. These factors include tobacco use, unhealthy diet, harmful use of alcohol, lack of physical activity, and exposure to persistent stress as well as obesity, high cholesterol and diabetes mellitus.

All adults should have their blood pressure checked. routinely, it is important to know your numbers. If blood pressure is high, they need the advice of their family physician on the steps that need to be taken to ensure a healthy and good quality of life.

For some people, lifestyle changes such as stopping tobacco use, eating healthily, exercising regularly and avoiding the harmful use of alcohol, are sufficient to control blood pressure. For this reason it is recommended for one to always consult their physician to ensure that you are on the right track towards maintaining good health.

Adults can support treatment by adhering to the prescribed medication, lifestyle changes and by monitoring their health, according to the WHO information provided.

A stronger, better Sint Maarten relies on communities that collectively strive to promote good health, longevity and a better quality of life.

For more information call CPS at 542-3003; or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Minister Plenipotentiary Cabinet Staff takes part in Media Workshop

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – The Minister Plenipotentiary and her staff took part in a media workshop at the Cabinet on Wednesday May 22nd by media and communication strategists and trainer(s) firm Pennock/Birza.

The need for the workshop was emphasized by the ongoing developments directly linked to the rebuilding and repositioning process of Sint Maarten related to the damages to the island after the passing of hurricanes Irma and Maria.

The urgent requirement for clear and concise dissemination of information to the larger public in the Netherlands, in particular pertaining to the improvements and the ongoing headway in the rebuilding process, is extremely necessary to combat the negative narrative repeatedly being publicized in the Dutch media, which mainly focuses on the “dump situation”, politics and the corruption allegations.

Minister Plenipotentiary Jorien Wuite elaborated on the necessity to encourage the change in the reporting manner of matters related to Sint Maarten while bringing to the attention and keeping in mind the relevance of repositioning and rebranding the island.

The need to focus and bring the current changes taking place on the island to light and progress made thus far should be the basis for a more positively formulated narrative, according to a statement from the Cabinet on Friday.

The role of Cabinet of the Minster Plenipotentiary is clearly defined in the Governing program 2018 -2022 and eludes to the task mandated to the Cabinet which is to not only ensure proper representation on a Kingdom level, but to gear its focus on diligently seeking partnerships and working towards the stimulation of economic diversification through constant engagement with third parties interested in investing and partnering with businesses on the island.

“Promotion of, and reporting on, Sint Maarten by highlighting the positive changes on the island can and will in fact encourage and assist in bringing these endeavors to fruition.

“As representatives of the island in the Netherlands, but also through steady contacts within the diplomatic community, communicating and informing third parties, including the media of the constant developments taking place on the island will lend to the creation of not only an improved image of the island as it will go a long way to informing the Dutch and international community on the progress.

“This entails the dissemination of accurate, diverse, and positive information in line with the NRBP Bureau and the Government of Sint Maarten.

“The need for such a training by the entire staff consisting of merely nine individuals, cannot be underscored enough. The workshop will be followed by a practical training session in June and the development of a communication strategy and media relations plan which will both be aligned with the Minister Plenipotentiary’s year plan that was recently approved by the Council of Ministers.

“The communication strategy will be drafted in close collaboration with the Department of Communication and the Prime Minister of Sint Maarten.

“As the Minister Plenipotentiary and her cabinet operate in a complex Dutch media world, this first media session is the first step that will allow them to be even better equipped to handle the media in The Netherlands, with the aim of communicating and encouraging a positive and uplifting narrative of the developments taking place on Sint Maarten, and of Sint Maarten as a whole,” the Cabinet press communique concludes.

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Gambling Regulator Clark and Detective/State Trooper Hanich to speaker at 4th AML & Gaming Forum

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) – The 4th Dutch Caribbean AML (Anti-Money Laundering) & Gaming Regulation Forum will have a number of interesting speakers coming from various backgrounds and professions such as Tony Clark and Dave Hanich.

All Training Sessions, Workshops, Debates and Discussions will be led by international experts such as Clark and Hanich who will address global regulatory standards and strategies to reduce the risk of criminal activity and increase compliance & transparency.

The Forum is being held from June 4-7 at the Sonesta Maho Beach Resort, Casino and Spa at Maho.

Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Stuart Johnson is calling on businesses in the AML & Gaming Regulation and support sectors to sign-up to attend the Forum.

“We are looking forward to hosting these international experts and we are pleased to be the venue for this very important Forum.

“The Forum will be promoting financial integrity and inclusive growth for the benefit of the Dutch Caribbean and Suriname with respect to international requirements and standards that exist in the gaming and banking industries,” Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Stuart Johnson said on Friday.

One of the speakers will be Tony Clark, a former senior Australian gambling regulator, has worked in internet gambling since 1995. In his role as a consultant - now working with the International Governance & Risk Institute (GovRisk) - Tony has provided policy advice and drafted legislation for jurisdictions around the world to regulate land-based gaming, lotteries and casino industries.

Detective Dave Hanich is a Delaware State Trooper currently assigned to the Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE), responsible for all criminal investigations relating to gaming offences, will also be a speaker at the upcoming Forum early June.

He has been assigned to DGE from almost the inception of the unit, which was formed when casino gaming expanded to table games and sports-betting in the U.S. State of Delaware.

Previously, Dave worked for six years within the Criminal Investigations Unit (Burglary and Major Crimes) where he was tasked with working felony level cases ranging from Fraud to Attempted Murder.

He joined DGE in 2010 and has variously worked on applicant/vendor background investigations, criminal enforcement/investigations, and intelligence.

In 2012 and 2013, Dave was nominated for state-wide Trooper of the Year based on his investigations and accomplishments within the Delaware Division of Gaming Enforcement.

Registration remains open to attend the AML & Gaming Regulation Forum. To REGISTER for the forum, simply follow this link:

www.govrisk.org/DCGRF2019. Click Registrations and follow the process through to the end.

The Government of Sint Maarten via the Ministry of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Traffic and Telecommunications (TEATT) and GovRisk, a UK-based Training & Consultancy specialising in Financial Crime Prevention and Anti-Corruption, are the organizers of the Forum which will promote compliance, Anti-Money Laundering, New technologies and Exploring the Future of Business Risk.

This regional event will bring together key stakeholders such as: Banks - Compliance Officers & Internal Risk Managers; Central Banks, Regulatory & Supervisory Bodies; Financial Intelligence Units, Treasury & Revenue, Law Enforcement; Casinos, Lotteries, Slot & Arcade Operators; Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs) such as: Law Firms, Auditors & Accountants, Insurance Firms, Real Estate Agents, Car Dealers, Jewellers, Credit Unions & Charities.

Over 100 casino directors, gaming regulators, compliance officers, law enforcement personnel and representatives from the legal and banking sectors from across five Caribbean jurisdictions will attend the event.

Tony Clark

Tony Clark

 

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General Audit Chamber 2018 Annual Report Now Available Online for Public Review

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The General Audit Chamber issued its annual report for the year 2018 on May 24, 2019. By law, the General Audit Chamber must present a report of its activities about the preceding year to both the Governor and Parliament prior to July 1st.

The General Audit Chamber is an independent High Council of State and is responsible for examining the effectiveness and legal compliance of the revenue and expenditure of Government.

The annual report includes a review of the audits conducted and provides a description of the General Audit Chamber’s operations and gives account for the use of its budget of fiscal year 2018.

During fiscal year 2018, the General Audit Chamber published several audit reports, including the investigation of the Crime Prevention Fund, the APS’ 2016 Financial Statements, and the review of Redundancy Pay for political authorities.

The General Audit Chamber set out to increase public outreach via social media. Topics included the budget, pension, and the audit on redundancy pay, using a combination of animation and information. This initiative has been very successful, with almost 21 thousand views of our animated posts in 2018.

The General Audit Chamber has put more emphasis on digitalization and notes that the 2018 Annual Report is the first to be exclusively available in digital form with links to the audit reports, animations, Facebook page and the website.

The Annual Report 2018 is published in both English and Dutch and is available on the website of the General Audit Chamber (www.arsxm.org).

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Prime Minister Romeo Marlin presents token of appreciation to Four Community Heroes

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - On Wednesday morning at the Council of Ministers Press Briefing, Prime Minister Leona Romeo Marlin joined the Fire Department in thanking the four heroic drivers of two water trucks, Steve Le Grand, Francisco Webster, Ricardo Brooks & Gerald Brooks that took the action of outing the fire at the Belvedere Residence on Tuesday afternoon May 21st.

Prime Minister Romeo Marlin said, “On behalf of all involved in this incident, I take this opportunity to thank you publicly for your quick thinking and decision making that may have prevented the fire from getting out of hand.”

Based on information from the staff of the Fire Department Prime Minister Romeo Marlin indicated that the affected family of three children, their mother and a neighbor were all checked by the Ambulance personnel on the scene. While the Sint Maarten Housing Development Foundation and Social Welfare Department, are taking the necessary steps to handle the housing and living condition situation respectively going forward.

On Wednesday afternoon, Prime Minister Romeo Marlin invited the four community heroes to the Government Administration Building to present them with a token of appreciation on behalf of the people and the Government of Sint Maarten.

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WIB Volunteers Collect 23 Bags of Trash in Philipsburg area

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - On Saturday 18 May 2019, the Windward Islands Bank (WIB) employees were seen near the parking lot next to Government Administration Building and along the Ring road (between GEBE and Blue Point) picking up discarded thrash.

The thrash picked up included: plastics, aluminum cans, and glass bottles.

In total 23 construction bags were filled and discarded in the dumpster. The Clean Up was organized to keep the Island clean from debris and preventing drainage blockage. 

We also encountered two good Samaritans, one offering a case of water to the volunteers and the other promising coconut water.

The WIB employees had a great time and felt positive to have assisted with the clean-up. 

“WIB wishes to urge our community to practice recycling and get the trash in the dumpster,” a WIB press release stated.

WIB - Your partners in progress.

wib PIc on Ring Road clean up wed2205 ins1

wib Before near Gov Parking

wib After near Gov Parking wib tue2205

 

 

 

 

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Fire Dept./Office of Disaster Management calls on nation to start preparing for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – The first named storm of the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season formed this past Monday near Bermuda, and the official start of the season is still less than two weeks away.

“Remember it only takes one,” is the theme of the Fire Department/Office of Disaster Management (ODM) for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season.

The formation of Sub-Tropical Storm Andrea on Monday is a reminder that another hurricane season is just around the corner, and the population should start to review their plans for the season.  The hurricane season officially opens on June 1st and runs until November 30.

The Fire Department/ODM is calling on the Sint Maarten community to begin to prepare early for the Atlantic hurricane season, and to have home and business disaster plans in place before the peak period of the season which is from August – October. 

The selected storm names for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season by the World Meteorological Organization are: Barry, Chantal, Dorian, Erin, Fernand, Gabrielle, Humberto, Imelda, Jerry, Karen, Lorenzo, Melissa, Nestor, Olga, Pablo, Rebekah, Sebastien, Tanya, Van and Wendy.

ODM is urging residents to use the next few weeks to prepare adequately by reviewing their annual hurricane season preparatory list.

ODM adds that the country’s disaster preparedness and emergency management system have been busy preparing its response mechanisms and are ready to deal with any eventuality arising during the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season.

ODM request the population to check their disaster plan and review their disaster supply kit.  Prepare early and avoid being caught unprepared.  Minimize your dependence on government, family or friends.  Preparedness starts with every one of us within our communities.

Some of the preparations that should be carried out now are checking hurricane shutters; the roof of your home or business; and make sure windows and shutters close securely.

Persons living along coastal areas as well as those in flood prone areas should start looking at what measures they would take in the event of a hurricane strike which could cause flood challenges.

Mariners who are seeking shelter in the Simpson Bay Lagoon or Oyster Pond should also make plans to stay with friends or at a hotel until the storm has passed rather than staying on-board their vessel.

Additional public awareness communications will be made in the coming weeks via print, online (social media, YouTube) and broadcast media with respect to preparing for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season. 

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SMMC celebrates Day of Legends and Nurse Orris Jack Bell Award

SINT MAARTEN (CAY HILL) - The St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) celebrated its fifth annual Nurse Orris Jack Bell Award (NOJBA) on May 11th, 2019.

The Orris Jack Bell award recognizes a nurse who serves as the perfect example of what it means to be a nurse. One who is dedicated, self-less and who willingly goes above and beyond to be the caregiver that the community needs, as Nurse Orris Jack Bell has done for nursing in the years she served in the field.

Nurse Orris Jack Bell herself, legends (retirees), award nominees and their friends and families came out to the luncheon which was held at the charming Little Well Oasis in Cole Bay. The event celebrated its theme “Nurses Who Paved the Way” through honoring nurses of past and present that have been role models within nursing on the island. A pre-celebratory lagoon cruise was enjoyed by over 60 legends (retired nurses) prior to the award ceremony.

The Celebration of Nursing Legends and the Nurse Orris Jack Bell Award was created by Antonio Pantophlet and Brunilda Illidge of the SMMC.

This year the event was hosted by Brunilda Illidge of SMMC’s Education department. An opening speech was delivered by SMMC’s Manager Patient Care/Education, Antonio Pantophlet. Fellow organizers include Vitalia Richardson and Magriet Priest of the SMMC Education department.

This year’s five nominees were Mae Grace Zurita (SMMC), Frank Bannis (SMMC), Nancy Flanders (St. Martin’s Home), Suzette De Cuba (District Nursing) and Nirmala Vlaun (Public Health). Each person embodies the spirit of the award within the various institutions on the island. Frank Bannis was awarded the Orris Jack Bell Award this year presented to him by Nurse Orris Jack Bell herself. He is the fifth recipient of the award. Past winners include, Orris Jack Bell, Daphne St. Rose (St. Martin’s home) Rafael Antione (SMMC) and Marisol Wilson (Prison).

Bernadette Gumbs (SMMC) was the newly and only inducted nursing legend. She was presented an award for her continued passion and dedication to her job. In addition, a pleasantly surprised Viola Sing (former lab technician SLS), was presented the Supportive Legend Award. A supportive legend is retiree who has worked closely with nurses throughout their career. Last year’s recipient was Geraldine Eerland (SMMC, former Supervisor of Radiology).

A moment of silence was held for all nurses who passed within the past year (2018-2019) honoring their memories. Nurses remembered include Graciela Virginia, Truus Schaminee, Rudmila Ipcedencia and Sheryl York.

The observance was festive, as the guests enjoyed good food and the musical talents of an excellent DJ Ruby. Antonio shared his thoughts on the importance of such an event. “This event is always a wonderful time for our nurses and our legends to come together in celebration of all nurses. We will continue to give thanks to all nurses who have paved the way for our nurses today”.

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