The Virgin Islands community reflected on the Territory’s journey from past to present when it observed the annual Territory Day Celebration on Monday, June 29.
During the ceremony, Premier and Minister for Finance, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE said, “A people without an understanding of how they came into being will be forced to imagine and create a history for themselves and we cannot afford that, knowing the rich history of the Virgin Islands.”
Minister for Education and Culture, Honourable Myron V. Walwyn spoke on the importance of building on the foundation the Territory’s forefathers laid many years ago.
Honourable Walywn said, “The development of national pride and the preservation of the Virgin Islands are of primary importance to this administration. That is why we have implemented some of the initiatives that we have done over recent years, such as the development of our Territorial Song, our Territorial Wear, our Signs and Symbols, the mandatory requirement of National Citizen Service programmes for high school seniors, the introduction of tourism, financial services and Virgin Islands history in our schools.”
The Minister of Education and Culture also discussed the importance of raising future generations so that they too can positively contribute to the Territory.
He said, “We also must ensure that we return civics to the Virgin Islands education system in both the primary and secondary schools because we understand the need to build good and informed citizens.”
Several activities were held at the Central Administration Complex including the presentation of the Official Musical Score for the Territorial Song and a special presentation recognising renowned Virgin Islands politicians for their contributions to the Territory.
Families of the late Honourable Terrence B. Lettsome, the late Honourable Hubert Robinsion O’Neal, the late Dr. the Honourable Willard Wheatley, MBE, and living honouree Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal, OBE were presented with a token to recognise the former leaders for their political contributions to the Territory.
Territory Day celebrations were observed under the theme “Our Story Continues” in an effort to encourage the community to not only reflect on the Territory’s past, but to also reflect on its future.