By Neals J. Chitan
Over the past months, Grenada has experienced its undesired portion of a significant rise in crime and violence in the Caribbean.
Along with an incline in traditional criminal activity, is the sad reality of a definite upsurge in incidences of domestic violence. This summer, within an eight day period, three women were murdered at the hands of their male companions, creating a serious concern for what can be the start of a downward spiral into an uncontrollable spate of violence towards the mothers, sisters, aunts, nieces, grandmas and daughters of our homeland.
Neals J. Chitan is the Grenadian-born president of Motiv-8 For Change International -- a Toronto based High Impact Social Skill Agency that is specially dedicated to the social empowerment of individuals, families and communities
It is with this level of concern that I decided, as the Grenadian-born president of Motiv-8 For Change International -- a Toronto-based High Impact Social Skill Agency, to propose to Grenada, “Uprooting Crime and Violence”, a national conference that is part of our international crime reduction social skill arsenal and designed and copyrighted to directly address nine psycho-social roots of crime and violence, with an emphasis on domestic violence.
This professional development conference is meant to strategically engage every level of education, counselling, prevention and enforcement in a national history-making initiative that can have a sustainable impact on the incidence of crime and violence in the host country.
After receiving the proposal and recognizing the impact this conference can have on the citizens of Grenada, Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Social Development, Mrs Sandra Thomas showed strong leadership in officially requesting this event for her Spice Island nation.
However, she did not hesitate to articulate Grenada’s inability financially to undertake the professional cost involved in hosting this event. This left Motiv-8 For Change International with three options: (1) withdraw the proposal totally since Grenada cannot pay for it; (2) donate the complete cost of the conference; or (3) seek sponsors to assist in undertaking some aspects of the cost.
This is where the Office of the Consulate General of Grenada in Toronto sprung into action. After a meeting with the Consul General, she expressed her thanks on behalf of the government of Grenada for our ongoing efforts to make a difference in the lives of the people of Grenada and immediately initiated the process of soliciting the sponsorship of Caribbean Airlines to assist in making this a reality.
Good news came when Caribbean Airlines indicated partnership by issuing an airline ticket to ensure the travel of the conference presenter and conference materials to and from Grenada, while Motiv-8 For Change International donated the full cost of the conference.
On behalf of the people of Grenada, we thank Caribbean Airlines for partnering with us to bring crime reduction strategies to Grenada, thus giving back to a community which has significantly contributed to their success as the “Airline of the Caribbean”
“Uprooting Crime and Violence Conference” convenes on Thursday, November 1, 2012, at the National Stadium, St Georges, kicking off a month of gender-based violence awareness in Grenada.