FOR THIS YEAR’S St Joseph parish ambassadors Christina Smith and Algernon Broomes, it has been one exciting and energetic experience.
A memorable encounter for them was meeting a resident named Sam in Chimborazo.
“Sam told us about Crop Over festivities being held at the plantation houses before it moved to Spring Garden, and that he would like to see it return to that. Information like that that we never would have known has been a wealth of knowledge for us both,” said Broomes.
Their parish project, entitled Project Paradise, focuses on the natural rock formation in Parris Hill and the Burke Mayers Park. “One unique feature of our parish is the rock mural created by artist Chris Chandler who used the rock to fashion animals out of it before painting it,” said Smith.
As for the Spirit Of The Nation show this weekend at Gymnasium of the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex, they intend to take patrons on a tourist adventure of the parish. “We’re bringing something from St Joseph and pairing it with tourism to give the audience a thrill,” said a smiling Broomes.
Of the support they have received, they both described it as overwhelming.
“The old-timers were able to guide us and give us the real history and educate us on our home parish. The youth, on the other hand, were harder to associate with because in our parish colours we seem to be on a political platform to them. However, it’s been all good,” said Broomes.
“I have met some wonderful people in this programme. We have gelled and the friendships are ones that I would have for years to come,” mused Broomes.
“I have learnt a lot that I had no prior knowledge of. I know it’s a small parish but I had no idea so many people lived here and so many things happened here,” added Smith.
Broomes said that since joining the programme in February, he has been able to present himself in a more professional manner, while for Smith, it has been the wealth of knowledge she has accumulated.
“For me, it was learning to present myself in front of a crowd. Learning how to speak and present myself better is what has stood out for me. I also wanted to do something different and expand my knowledge of the parish. I really only go from home to work and back, so I found a way to get out and meet people while learning a lot at the same time,” said Broomes, a naval officer in the Barbados Coast Guard.
As for Smith, a dental assistant at Apex Dental Clinic, it has also been the accumulation of knowledge.
“I wanted to do something for self-development and to do something outside the box. The exposure you get from the various programmes is what stands out to me. Who would have thought being a parish ambassador I would have gotten to do CPR or being engaged in financial management? I have become a well-rounded person because of it,” she added.