The Government of Dominica, the Kalinago Council and UNDP Launch Creative Children’s Books During 120th Anniversary of Kalinago Territory.
July 14, 2023
Salybia, Dominica, July 14, 2023 – The Government of Dominica and the Kalinago Council, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), successfully launched the Kalinago Comic and Colouring Book during the 120th anniversary of the Kalinago Territory. The launch event, held on July 3, 2023, underscored the significance of recognizing and honouring Indigenous peoples in Dominica.
The comic, "The Adventures of Nago and Miri: Jewel of the Kalinago" and the colouring book, "Kalinago Iatiwa: Nou Sé Kalinago, We Are Kalinago," showcase stories of indigenous innovation, knowledge, and practices that have positively impacted communities. This effort is part of the UNDP's Project "Strengthening Sustainable Livelihoods and Resilience in the Kalinago Territory" (SSLR), which supports various areas such as agriculture, reforestation and tourism opportunities in Dominica's indigenous communities.
The Kalinago Comic and Colouring Book initiative provides young children and students with engaging ways to learn about the Kalinago cultural heritage and their invaluable contributions to the nation's development. Partners in the project include the Kalinago Council, the Ministry of Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment, the India-UN Partnership Fund, and the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation.
In attendance and speaking at the event, the Honourable Cozier P. Frederick, Minister for the Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment and Constituency Empowerment reminded students, parents and teachers in attendance to cherish local insights shared in the publications. "It is important to know our history and Kalinago culture is an integral part of Dominican heritage. Our stories remind us of where we came from, show us our present and inspire our future paths. We are happy to work with partners like the UNDP who want to participate in creating a better space for our community.”
Marlon Clarke, UNDP Programme Analyst for Prevention, Recovery and Resilience, highlighted the collaborative approach taken to compile these stories, emphasizing the importance of inclusivity and the involvement of the Kalinago community to produce the publications. “By valuing indigenous perspectives and engaging in an inclusive and participatory process, these books accurately portray the richness and diversity of indigenous contributions to development,” Clarke stated.
The UNDP extends gratitude to the Government of India through the India-UN Development Partnership Fund for their financial and strategic guidance, as well as to the Ministries of Education and Kalinago Upliftment and the Honourable Cozier Frederick for their support in realizing this project. Gratitude is also extended to the books’ author and illustrators for their creative contributions to the project. Special appreciation goes to the Kalinago Chief, Mr. Lorenzo Sanford, the Kalinago Council, and the Kalinago elders and tradition bearers for their invaluable contributions to preserving and passing on Kalinago stories, myths, traditions, and knowledge.
UNDP Barbados & the Eastern Caribbean reiterates its commitment to supporting the Kalinago people and collaborating with the Government of Dominica to advance the Kalinago story and rights, in alignment with the UN Declaration of Indigenous Rights. This commitment reflects UNDP's ongoing work and engagement with indigenous peoples worldwide, aiming to eradicate poverty, reduce inequalities, and promote inclusive development.