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10th Youth Forum Selection Process.

PHILIPSBURG/PARIS:--- The 10th UNESCO Youth Forum will be held at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France from 25 to 26 October 2017.

The forum brings together expert youth from all regions of the world to discuss pertinent issues related to UNESCO fields of competence. During the youth forum, a series of recommended actions and priorities will be drafted to guide UNESCO’s youth actions for the next biennium. These will be presented at the 39th Session of the UNESCO General Conference.
For the 10th UNESCO Youth Forum selection process, there were four candidates who submitted an application, namely: Kamilah Gumbs, Celine Mayeko-Coklee, Rochana Richardson, Mirla Cortico-Ramirez.

The deadline for submissions was June 9, 2017. The 10th UNESCO Youth Forum was advertised via newspaper, online and Facebook pages of Government, UNESCO and Youth Department. The application was also made available online via the Government website, the UNESCO website and Facebook page.

On June 27, 2017, the first review session was held where the four (4) applications were reviewed thoroughly. During that meeting, the date for the interview session with the candidates was also set, and a rubric for evaluating the candidates was used to score some of the key areas.

The selection committee for the Youth Forum consisted of Ms. Faye Arnell and Ms. Marcellia Henry. Mrs. Connie Francis-Gumbs, who is also a member of the committee abstain from participating since her daughter was also a candidate.

During the July 4th interview session, the four candidates were interviewed, and the rubric was used once more for evaluating the face to face session. See below the rubric used to evaluate the candidates.

The cumulative points of the candidates after the review of the application form and the interview session is a follow:

1. Kamilah Gumbs: 86 points
2. Celine Mayeko-Coklee: 85 points
3. Rochana Richardson: 74 points
4. Mirla Cortico-Ramirez: 62 points
From the performance of the candidates in both settings, it is the recommendation of the committee that Kamilah Gumbs represents St. Maarten at the UNESCO Youth Forum. If there are additional funds, or if UNESCO Paris is able to sponsor a youth participant, we will then recommend that Celine Mayeko-Coklee also attends.

SSSD hosts “How to Apply to Schools in the USA and Canada” workshop

PHILIPSBURG:--- Applying to schools can feel like an overwhelming process for students.
If required documents are not submitted to the schools in a timely manner, students may not be considered for acceptance and it can delay the student’s start time.

The Student Support Services Division will be hosting an interactive workshop entitled “How to Apply to Schools in the USA and Canada” on August 31, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. at the University of St. Martin. Students in their last two years of secondary school or recent graduates who are interested in studying in the United States of America (USA) or Canada are invited to attend this free interactive workshop.

The Student Support Services Division (SSSD) of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport aims to put students and parents at ease by providing a step by step process of applying to schools and factors to consider when choosing schools to apply to. The required documents requested by the schools will also be discussed.

Students are encouraged to contact the Student Support Services Division at 5431235 to reserve a seat or to simply attend the session. Students are urged to be on time.

Second Round of ICH Consultations September 4-6 2017

PHILIPSBURG:--- The Department of Culture in collaboration with St. Maarten National Commission (NatCom) for UNESCO will host the second round of National Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) Consultations on Monday, September 4th – Wednesday, September 6th, 2017 at 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the New Government Building Conference Room, Soualiga Blvd. in Philipsburg. The theme of this activity is “Strengthening Capacities for Implementing the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in St. Maarten” and will be facilitated by Global UNESCO Facilitator Mr. David Brown of Jamaica. A field excursion exercise will take place on Tuesday, September 5th, 2017 in the Simpson Bay District where participants will be able to actively observe, partake and learn about the making of fishing pots, nets, traps, boats, which are key elements of the Simpson Bay district and St. Maarten's cultural heritage. To recap, the main ambitions of this 3-day workshop are:

1) Strengthen capacities for Implementing the UNESCO ICH Convention on Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH);
2) Review, supplement and finalize the First Draft National ICH Inventory (List) of St. Maarten;
3) Experience and explore specific aspects of living heritage on St. Maarten.
It is crucial that we have a good balance of heritage experts/professionals, community organizers, tradition bearers, and practitioners to ensure the success of the workshop and reinforce our commitment to keeping with the UNESCO Convention on Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage. Persons interested in participating are asked to immediately contact Ms. Marcellia Henry, Secretary General of UNESCO via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and/or Mrs. Sharine Allamby, Policy Officer of the Dept. of Culture via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Digi-Summertime Summer Camp hosted 35 new inventors at the Media Lab located in the Philipsburg Jubilee Library for 2 weeks in July.

PHILIPSBURG:--- The kids, aged 9-16, participated in several workshops like Photoshop, Makey Makey, Laser Cutting, 3D printing, Arduinos and New Age Gaming. The team of local instructors kept the participants eager and excited throughout. "The camp was phenomenal and amazing. I learned a lot of stuff which is really beneficial for my future (Siddarth).
The Camp is in its 2nd year and aims at equipping kids with the skills to invent and create tangible products. A great deal of attention is placed on programming and system development as instructors allow kids to use modern day technological tools to bring their imagination to life. "This camp was very interesting. I learned many new things and got to interact with new people and make some friends" (Kris)
To take the theory to the road the kids were treated to 2 field trips sponsored by UTS where they visited the UTS Headquarters in Philipsburg and the UTS Towers in Pointe Blanche.
"It was a success, we are very grateful to the parents that enrolled their kids, all of us at DigiWorkz would like to encourage all kids out there to invent and help better the world we live in," said Janushka Mukhi, camp coordinator.
"I enjoyed the stuff at the DigiWorkz Summer Camp. Each day was new, meaning new activities like Arduin0, graphic design. OUr instructors were Marvio, Sjorensly, Daniel and more. Thank you, it was a fun camp and see you soon" (Jai)
The Digi-Summertime Summer Camp is a project, under the DigiWorkz program of the Foresee Foundation. Parents and kids interested in the DigiWorkz program can contact the Foresee Foundation via their Facebook page or by calling 581-5050 for the President of the Foresee Foundation, Jose Sommers - Verschueren.

TelEm Group maintenance works in Betty’s Estate, Saunders and Almond Grove Thurs. and Sat.

Pond Island:--- TelEm Group technicians will be carrying out important repair and maintenance works in several areas around the island Thursday and Saturday, as a result, voice and data services for residential and business customers will be affected.

The maintenance works will begin Thursday, August 17, in the Almond Grove area from 8:00 am in the morning until approximately 1:00 pm in the afternoon when work is scheduled to be completed. Amongst the roads affected by the maintenance works are: Almond Grove Road, Calabash Road and Mountain Ebony Road.

A different team of technicians will be carrying out repairs to a telecommunication cable that feeds residential and business clients in the Betty’s Estate and Saunders areas from 6:00 a.m. until approximately 4:00 p.m. Saturday, August 19.

In both cases the repair and maintenance works are being carried out to improve and enhance telecommunication services.

TelEm Group takes this opportunity to apologize to customers for any inconvenience caused in the areas mentioned above, where repair and maintenance works will be carried out.

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