Minister of Social Cohesion, Dr. George Norton and Regional Executive
Officer (REO), Denis Jaikaran today joined the residents of Parika
Façade and Barns Avenue in a Community Clean up and Tree Planting
The activity was organised by the Community Development Council (CDC)
of Parika and forms part of their calendar of activities to promote
Social Cohesion within their community.
At a formal ceremony to launch the activity, Minister Norton
congratulated the members of the CDC group for stepping up to the call
and executing a community project.
“This is a bold step in the right direction and you the members of the
CDC must be congratulated. I want you to know that I am extremely
proud of this move and even happier to know that I am here, not as a
facilitator, but as a guest. You all did it at the local level without
central government directing anything. This is magnanimous progress in
our country. This activity reflects the true meaning of Social
Cohesion,” said Minister Norton.
He further reminded the more than two hundred persons gathered that
the vision of the Department of Social Cohesion is to see a unified
Guyana where diversities are embraced, conflicts resolved, networks
and collaboration with stakeholders strengthened, equity promoted, and
decision-making processes result in equal opportunities and benefits
for all. Also, the minister said that the core values of his
department are integrity, trust, service, transparency and
accountability, reliability, responsiveness and inclusivity.
Project Coordinator at the Department of Social Cohesion, Sharon
Patterson said that the activity planned and executed at the Parika
Façade is in keeping with the mission of the Department.
“This activity is in keeping with our mission which is to support
actions that strengthen key partnerships across sectors, facilitate
bridging of gaps within and across communities and contribute to
socio-economic, cultural, spiritual well-being and enriched
livelihoods,” said Sharon Patterson. She also assured the community
that further training in Social Cohesion will be provided to the
community through the Department.
REO Denis Jaikaran, in his remarks, noted that Social Cohesion is a
process of nurturing individual and community relationships for
building a unified Guyana. “This is community involvement. This is
working together. We must remove the acids in our minds and fill it
with love, harmony and togetherness for our children will enjoy the
fruit of the trees we plant,” said Jaikaran who also pledged his
office’s support for future activities .
Vice Chairman of the CDC group John Raggobeer said, “What we are doing
here today is physically cleaning our environment and physically
planting trees, but we are symbolizing to the world that teamwork
brings success and that the tree represents us and if we are to get
sweet fruits and true beauty from the trees we must care them and
treat them well hence we are the trees and we must care each other and
treat each other with love and respect and our environment will be rid
of the negativities.”
The first tree was planted by Minister Norton and the second by the
REO. Over fifty trees were planted. The clean-up activity began
earlier in the morning and saw almost all residents participating in
beautifying their community.