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Bahamas High Commission, London

High Commissioner Bethel signed the book of condolence for Mr. Warren James Levarity, C.M.G, former Cabinet Minister and Member of Parliament, at Bahamas House on Wednesday 19 November 2014.

The book of condolence will remain open to the public on Thursday 20 November from 10am to 4pm.
























 Seated from left at a meeting held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday, November 17, are Eselyn Jones, Vice President for Student Affairs at the College of The Bahamas; Chet Neymour, Deputy Chief of Missions and Alternate OAS Representative, The Bahamas Embassy in Washington DC; Juliete E. Mallet Phillip, Partnership Program Coordinator in the DHDEE of the OAS; and Nicole Duncan, Education Specialist in the DHDEE of the OAS. Standing from left are Monique Hinsey, Consultant in the Ministry of Education; Maurene French, Managing Director of the Lyford Cay Foundation; Timyka Davis, Director of Student Leadership and International Relations at the College of The Bahamas; Mikhail Bullard, Third Secretary at the Permanent Mission to the OAS in Washington DC; Nikki Bethell, Communications Director in the Ministry of Education; and Sharmine McKenzie of the Technical Assistance Division in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


NASSAU, Bahamas (BIS Nov. 18, 2014) — Representatives from the Human Development, Education and Employment Department (DHDEE) of the Organization of American States (OAS) met with Bahamian stakeholders to apprise them of increased education and training opportunities for Bahamians through the expanded scholarship programs offered by the OAS. The meeting was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday, November 17.

 Led by DHDEE coordinator for the partnership program, Juliete Mallet Phillip, the group also discussed ways to improve on the relatively low level of Bahamian participation in the myriad of scholarship opportunities provided by the OAS.  In attendance were representatives from the College of The Bahamas, the Ministry of Education, Bahamas Information Services, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Lyford Cay Foundation.   Of particular interest was the partnership program for higher education and training. Created in 2000, the OAS Consortium of Universities currently comprises over one-hundred higher education institutions and has significantly increased the number of scholarships recipients over the years. Over 3,000 scholarships were granted since 2010 and 1,800 alone in 2013, but notwithstanding this, the level of Bahamian participation remains relatively low. Mrs. Philip bemoaned the fact that even though the partnership with the University of Brussels made available some sixty scholarships in 2013, no Bahamians applied.  It was agreed that more public education was needed to raise the level of awareness among the student population and the public at large of these scholarship opportunities. Distinct advantages of the partnership program over traditional OAS scholarships are that these scholarships include language training; they cover about 90% of education expenses and the academic disciplines of medicine and law are included.   Under this partnership program and on an annual basis, China offers more than 100 scholarships; Belgium makes available 60; Macedonia awards 15; several hundred can be secured through Mexico and Brazil has approved some 500 scholarships for 2015, up from the 450 scholarships the cluster of 46 universities awarded in 2014. Applications are to be filed online at the OAS portal.  According to the OAS, the Department of Human Development, Education and Employment (DHDEE) through its OAS Scholarship and Training Programs continues to provide diverse scholarship opportunities for academic and professional development studies to citizens or permanent residents of OAS member countries to study in recognized educational institutions of the OAS member and observer states, with the goal of strengthening human and institutional capacity and thus, foster integral development throughout the Hemisphere.  All interested persons can access additional information at<> or contact the Student Affairs Department at the College of The Bahamas; the Communications Division at the Ministry of Education; the Technical Support Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; the Bahamas Information Services Department or the Lyford Cay Foundation. Bahamian students living and studying abroad can also contact the nearest Bahamas embassy or General Consular for additional information and assistance.  




ATLANTA REMEMBERS: Stefan Moss, Janice Parks, Lincoln Parks (brother of Lavard ‘Manifest’ Parks), Bahamas Consul General, Randy E

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. Rolle, Deputy Consul General, Monique Vanderpool and Arthia Nixon, publicist. (Photo: Melissa Bevans) .

By The Ambassador Agency
for Bahamas Consul General of Atlanta
photos: Melissa Bevans, Arthia Nixon and Lisa Hawk-Hall

(Atlanta, Georgia)… With a Bahamian flag flying at half-mast outside the Bahamas Consul General’s Atlanta residence, those who lost loved ones in the November 9, 2014 plane crashed gathered to pay their respects and pledge to carry on their legacy.
Bahamas Consul General to Atlanta Randy E. Rolle, shared his encounter with Dr. Myles Munroe and his wife Ruth Ann who called upon his office for assistance, as well as his memories of the Parks family. The internationally revered author, evangelist and leader had stopped in because they needed more spaces in their passports before they journeyed on to Africa.
“I had offered to have them come to the residence if they missed their flight,” said Rolle. “It was a brief moment but a poignant moment for me, to sit with Dr. Myles Munroe, and in that space of time, he encouraged me, especially in my position as the representative of The Bahamas in this area. I was honored because he was an influential leader and I looked forward to working with him. Since the tragedy, our office has received many calls, cards and flowers from so many here in Atlanta who felt a personal connection to him just by simply being exposed to his principles via television or books. It’s not just us Bahamians mourning but Atlanta, and the rest of the world is mourning with us.”
Rolle also shared memories of his moments with Radel Parks, who was to be collaborating with his office on multiple film and entertainment projects in the near future.
“Radel was highly recommended to me as a knowledgeable source in the entertainment industry,” said Rolle. “She was a student but I was so impressed with her portfolio, I invited her along with my team and Marion Bethel of ‘Womanish Ways’ to meet producer Roger Bobb who was known as Tyler Perry’s right hand man for years. We toured the studios and she kept expressing how much she wished her twin sister would have been able to experience it with her. She also gave some of her work to Roger and he invited her to let him know when she was ready to come to the studio. She made such an impression that Roger said he plans to honor her in some way when he shoots in The Bahamas.”
“At first Lavard was just trying to figure out why I was so interested in helping his wife by having her join me to various entertainment industry events including the Bronze Lens Awards,” recalled Rolle. “That said so much about the love they had for each other, but we spoke man to man and became so cordial afterwards that I told him if ever Radel returned to Atlanta to continue her studies, the three of them – their son included – were welcome to come and stay here at the residence so that would be a burdened lifted off them.”
Monique Vanderpool, Deputy Consul General to Atlanta spoke about how she and Mrs. Parks had an instant connection and how she was so humbled when she first met Dr. Munroe in Washington, D.C. during a function.
“I was amazed at how so many people loved, respected and looked up to him, a son of our Bahamian soil,” she recalled saying how in awe she was of Dr. Munroe. “As for Radel, I can say that she left an indelible mark on my life and those who had the opportunity to know her. Her name Radel means “great advisor” and I am sure she advised so many while here on earth, especially in her role as a youth minister.”
Mrs. Parks’ student advisor Chris Stevens from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) spoke about how he was impacted by her in just one meeting, while Tesia Moss paid tribute to her friends with a violin selection. Robert Pinder, Bahamas Cultural Affairs and Student Relations Officer sang a song in honor of those aboard the fatal flight. 
“America had its 9/11 and we in the Bahamas now have our 11/9,” said Melissa Bevans who led the moment of silence before calling off the names of those who perished, adding the name Baby Parks to the list, acknowledging the Parks’ unborn child due to arrive in April 2015.
Stefan Moss recalled working with Mr. Parks as an artist and reminded attendees of the impact Manifest had on Bahamian music. In his uplifting tribute, Moss described how he was influenced greatly by Pastor Richard Pinder, Dr. Myles Munroe, and new senior pastor Dr. Dave Burrows, noting that his family joined the church in the 1980s. In fact, he attended the anniversary service for Dr. Dave and Pastor Angie Burrows just a week before the tragedy.
“They all fulfilled their purpose on this earth,” Moss reminded everyone. “I can guarantee you, everyone on that plane was living in their purpose. So my charge to you is to discover your life’s purpose. Discover what gives you meaning and to pursue it.”
“This was just going to be two or three of us gathered who knew the Parks family,” explained Arthia Nixon who worked closely with the Parks family as a publicist and on Manifest’s music label since their late teens. “But this wasn’t just our loss and as soon as the suggestion came up, the Consul General immediately offered his home for an intimate gathering. It’s interesting because instead of planning their promotion for the workshop Radel planned with the Consulate Office and the book and album Lavard was working on, this week was spent planning their memorial.”
Overcome with emotion, Lincoln Parks allowed his wife Janice to speak on his behalf.
“We see how much they meant to all of you and we are so touched,” said Janice Parks. “We wish to thank you for everything, organizing this and coming together with us.” 
Before closing, Janice Parks presented a copy of her brother-in-law’s album to the Consul General as a token of appreciation on behalf of their family. The Consul General in turn presented the Parks family with a photo surrounded by written condolences of the Bahamians in Atlanta as a keepsake. The poster board, the couple said, would be taken with them to The Bahamas and be on display at the Parks’ funeral.
Immediately following the remembrance ceremony, attendees fellowshipped to the soundtrack of Manifest’s HISLife HISMic album. Consul General Rolle stated that he has intentions to attend the Parks family funeral, set for late November. 




Pictured from left to right at a Special Event of the UN’s Economic and Financial Committee at the UN Headquarters in New York on Friday, November 14, 2014 are: Ms. Renae McKay, Chairman, National Insurance Board of The Bahamas; Ms. Rowena Bethel, Director of the National Insurance Board of The Bahamas; H.E. Dr. Elliston Rahming, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of The Bahamas to the United Nations and the Organisation of American States (OAS); Mrs. Tishka Francis, First Secretary, Permanent Mission of The Bahamas to the United Nations.


NEW YORK — The Bahamas participated in a Special Event of the UN’s Economic and Financial Committee on the theme of Information Communications Technologies and E-Government in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) which was held at the UN Headquarters in New York on Friday, November 14, 2014.

The event sought to highlight some of the specific calls for action contained in the recently adopted outcome document of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, held in September in Apia, Samoa, which relate to the strengthening of information and communications technology (ICT) platforms for Small Island Developing States in order to advance sustainable development and reduce vulnerabilities and isolation; an issue of particular concern for archipelagic nations such as The Bahamas.

The event reaffirmed ICTs and E-Government as powerful tools and enablers which can contribute significantly to strengthening the building blocks of good governance, including transparency, accountability, participation, as well as effective and efficient use of public sector resources.

Ms. Rowena Bethel, Director and CEO of the National Insurance Board of The Bahamas and member of the United Nations Committee of Experts in Public Administration, was among the expert panelists speaking during the event. Ms. Bethel gave a comprehensive presentation on the specific challenges faced as well as successes achieved by The Bahamas in the context of ICT and E-Government.

Co-Chair of the Special Event was Mrs. Tishka Francis of the Permanent Mission of The Bahamas to the United Nations, who is serving as Vice-Chair of the United Nations’ Economic and Financial (Second) Committee for the 69th Session of the General Assembly.

The event was also attended by H.E. Dr. Elliston Rahming, Ambassador of The Bahamas to the United Nations and the Organisation of American States (OAS); Ms. Renae McKay, Chairman of the National Insurance Board of The Bahamas; and members of the Permanent Mission of The Bahamas to the United Nations.