Officials at the Flamingo Gardens Urban Renewal Centre ended the month of January with a focus on Women in Service during which time the “varied and vast contributions” of Bahamian women — past and present — at the national and community levels, were recognized/celebrated. The Post-Majority Rule Day event was held under the patronage of the Hon. Rome Italia Johnson, the first female Speaker of the House of Assembly. Ms. Johnson served as Speaker from 1997-2002. Prior to that, she served as Deputy Speaker of the House of Assembly from 1992-1997. Ms. Johnson currently serves as Chairperson of the National Council for Older Persons.
Centre Manager, Mrs. Nicole Miller-Nabbie, said the event helped the Centre: “to bring greater attention/awareness to the contributions Bahamian women have made to the socio-economic development of The Bahamas and Bahamian communities in addition to the obtaining of Majority Rule in The Bahamas. (The annual observance of Majority Rule Day takes place January 10.
“Today, the Flamingo Gardens Urban Renewal family celebrates and gives recognition to the Hon. Rome Italia Johnson for her dedication and service to our nation,” Mrs. Miller-Nabbie said. “Bahamian women, past and present, have made, and continue to make, invaluable contributions to the socio-economic development of Bahamian society at both the community and national levels. Our focus, therefore, took us from the Women’s Suffrage Movement to the present which allowed us to examine the roles women have played, then and now.
“We can simultaneously celebrate as a nation, all of those women who have championed the cause of women and have helped, and continue to help to make opportunities available for the women of today who are giving service in roles that were once reserved solely for men.
“We saw January, the month in which Majority Rule Day is celebrated, as an opportune time to further recognize, advance and celebrate the vast contributions women have made to our society,” Mrs. Miller-Nabbie added.
The Women in Service event continued the Centre’s focus of bringing additional community attention to events occurring at the national, regional and international levels. In October (2020), the Centre led a community observance of Breast Cancer Month, using it as an opportunity to promote cancer awareness and education, in addition to early testing and detection, through the celebration of “Pink-tober-fest.”
(The colour Pink is the symbol of Breast Cancer Awareness and the fight to find a cure for the disease.) “The celebration of Pink-tober-fest allowed us to address the very relevant issue of Breast Cancer Awareness and Education utilizing a number of initiatives including virtual lectures and an immune health curbside event,” Mrs. Miller- Nabbie said.
The Centre then followed that up by joining in the national observance of the International Campaign of 16 Days of Activism to End Gender-based Violence against Women and Girls (held annually November 25 through December 10) in an effort to bring awareness to the need to end gender-based violence and to bring even greater focus to the collective need to end all forms of violence –physical, psychological, economic and cyber violence — against women and girls in particular, but also men and boys.
Centre personnel have been active in the surrounding communities since officially opening its doors to the community on October 15, 2019, establishing its very own Senior Citizens Association, After-School Programme, 4C’s Kids Club, Academic Kids Awards and Etiquette Classes. They have hosted/implemented empowerment and development programmes and seminars for residents – including those on wealth management and wellness events for seniors – as part of its commitment to the social development of the community.
They have continued to conduct regular feeding programmes – including regular lunch programmes, walk-a-bouts, clothing and shoes distribution initiatives, curbside food distribution initiatives and others in order to continue to address the social needs of residents during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Similar undertakings have occurred across the 23 locations in which there are Urban Renewal Centres.