Bocas News

News throughout each festival and all year round
26
Oct

Youth speak out on patriotism

The 4th annual Courts Bocas Speak Out Secondary School Tour is underway!

CDCA Minister Gadsby-Dolly and the 2016 Courts Bocas Speak Out "I am Trinbago" cast and crew

CDCA Minister Gadsby-Dolly and the 2016 Courts Bocas Speak Out “I am Trinbago” cast and crew

“I am Trinbago” was conceptualised as the theme of the 2016 Courts Bocas Speak Out School Tour by the 2 Cents Movement (tour designers, coordinators and hosts) to stimulate youth’s imagination around ideas of national identity and nation building. The theme is interpreted and performed by a cast of up to seven poets, tasked with entertaining, enlightening and inspiring hundreds of young people for exactly one hour.

This year, the project will see its largest team of poets visiting up to 55 secondary schools across Trinidad and Tobago over September and October, with occasional guest appearances by cross-genre music group, Freetown Collective.

The Courts Bocas Speak Out Secondary School Tour is the largest single youth-led national outreach project, reaching 30,000 students. The annual tour uses spoken word poetry to:

  • Engage youth on developmentally relevant issues
  • Cultivate interest in literature and writing for personal and academic development
  • Inspire youth to find their voice
  • Build a culture of socially conscious expression in schools.

Providing a vehicle for collaboration among key stakeholders – state, private sector and civil society –spoken word poetry is tapping the energy of the nation’s youth. Increasingly, public officials are recognising the art form’s potential to engage young people effectively. On her visit to the tour’s Bishop Anstey High School showcase on Friday 16 September, Ministry of Community Development, Culture and Arts (CDCA) Minister, Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly emphasised, “this was one of the most impactful programmes I’ve seen”.

Director of the 2 Cents Movement, Jean-Claude Cournand responded, “That the ministry is keen to partner and invest in this as part of its national development strategy says that they value the work we as young people are doing for youth. Together with Courts’ dedicated investment over the past four years, I see this as a major endorsement of civil society outreach.”

One of the leading entities in the spoken word movement, the 2 Cents Movement is a social enterprise designing arts-based interventions for youth development work.

Courts is the title sponsor; the Ministry of Community Development, Culture and Arts is the co-sponsor; the 2 Cents Movement is the coordinator & artistic manager; the Bocas Lit Fest is the senior administrative partner.

Minister Gadsby-Dolly gives animated response to host, Derron Sandy on topic of national identity

Minister Gadsby-Dolly gives animated response to host, Derron Sandy on topic of national identity

Hosts and poets, Idrees Saleem and Derron Sandy (left to right), highlight "National Patriotism Month", the reason for the tour's partnership with the CDCA Ministry.

Hosts and poets, Idrees Saleem and Derron Sandy (left to right), highlight “National Patriotism Month”, the reason for the tour’s partnership with the CDCA Ministry.

Together, 2 Cents spoken word poets showcase their craft (front left to right: Ashlee Burnett, Kervisha Cordice, Derron Sandy; back left to right: Seth Sylvester, Michael Logie)

Together, 2 Cents spoken word poets showcase their craft (front left to right: Ashlee Burnett, Kervisha Cordice, Derron Sandy; back left to right: Seth Sylvester, Michael Logie)

Packed into school hall, BAHS girls enraptured by what they hear.

Packed into school hall, BAHS girls enraptured by what they hear.