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Caribbean Heritage Month opportunity for United States to say, “Thanks” – Bush

WASHINGTON, DC – (JIS) President, George Bush has said that the observance of Caribbean Heritage Month is an opportunity for the United States to show its appreciation for the many ways Caribbean Americans have contributed to its growth.

In proclaiming June as Caribbean Heritage Month, President Bush said: “Caribbean Americans have helped to shape our national fabric with their vibrant traditions and their unique history. They have brightened our lives with the spirit and vitality of their culture through strong leadership and pride in their heritage.”

President George W. Bush

“Caribbean Americans have enriched America in all walks of life and they have contributed their talent and added to our nation’s development and prosperity. We especially show our gratitude for the men and women of Caribbean descent who served bravely in our Armed Forces and those still serving today. These heroes have answered a call greater than self and we keep them in our thoughts and prayers,” he added.

Several activities have been planned to celebrate Caribbean Heritage Month in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area. Among the events will be the staging of Caribbean Film Showcase, featuring The Harder They Come, starring Jimmy Cliff and Africa Unite featuring the Marley Family, which will take place from June 6 to 7, sponsored by the Institute of Caribbean Studies, Trans-African Forum, Caribbean Association of World Bank (CAWI) and staff, and Caribbean Professional Networking Series (CPN).

On Thursday June 12, Jamaican author, Beverly East will read and discuss her latest work, Reaper of the Souls, a novel based on the 1957 rail disaster in Kendal, Manchester. The reading will take place at the Enrique Iglesias Auditorium of the Inter-American Development Bank. The event is sponsored by the Institute of Caribbean Studies, the Office of the Caribbean Executive Director of the Inter-American Development Bank and the Embassy of Jamaica in Washington, D.C.

In June 2005, the U.S. Senate passed a Bill designating June as Caribbean American Heritage month and in June 2006 a Proclamation making it official was signed by President Bush.

Actress and singer, Sheryl Lee Ralph and basketball great, Rick Fox are the official spokespersons for Caribbean American Heritage Month.

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