Press Release:–(Soufriere, St. Lucia) – On Thursday, August 24, over 250 men of southwest St. Lucia were treated to the inspiring words of noted speakers, Pastor Dolston Morian, Hilary Charlemagne, Mathurine Emmanuel and Gregory St. Ange, at a much-anticipated men’s conference held on the beautiful grounds of the Morne Coubaril Estate in Soufriere.
The event held under the theme, “Changing the Misconception of Men”, sought to challenge men to take up their responsibility as leaders of both the home and society. It was held against the backdrop of the escalation in crime and the negative impact of the absence of father figures in the lives of many of the perpetrators. The event was the brainchild of organizer and sponsor, Trenton Emmanuel of Trent’s Construction, with corporate support from Cool Breeze Jeep and Car Rental, Soufriere Foundation, SMJ Beverages and New Venture Restaurant.
In the first ever public forum of its kind held in Soufriere, speaker after speaker reminded the men that their absence at home was a key contributor to the myriad of social problems which existed in the society. According to Seventh Day Adventist Pastor, Dolston Morian, “The father is the lynchpin of the family, so a man’s presence is critical to the success and survival of the child.” Motivational Speaker, Gregory St. Ainge, told the audience that a fatherless child is a directionless child; however, if men played their parenting roles, our children would be far more likely to succeed. Speakers pointed out that to begin addressing some of society’s ills; men must introspect, set a course, take up the gauntlet and play their roles.
“No one is saying that the journey ahead will be easy. However, fatherhood comes with some non-transferable responsibilities. So you must do your part!” reminded Sir Arthur Lewis Community College Lecturer, Hilary Charlemagne. The sole female speaker, Filmmaker, Mathurine Emmanuel, informed men that women looked forward to the day when men would take their rightful place and women would follow. “All we need is for our men to be confident, mentally strong, ambitious, honest and respectful,” she said.
The event which was expertly moderated by Radio Talk Show host, Russell Lake, was also used to recognize the long and dedicated work of three outstanding citizens of Soufriere: former Permanent Secretary and philanthropist, Percival McDonald, for contribution to public and community life; former educator, Marius Felix, for contribution to education; and sportsman, administrator and coach, Francis “Ti Francis” George, for contribution to Sports and Youth Development.
Throughout the night, the audience was entertained with songs from Covenant, Mountain Movers and Harmony, while Soufriere Action Theatre (SAT) delivered a hilarious but compelling theatrical presentation on the event’s theme.
The appreciative audience called on the organizer to make the event an annual one.