From left: Hartley Alleyne, Deputy Chairman of the National Art Gallery Board; Shirley Farnum, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Family, Culture, Sports and Youth and Dr. Gladstone Best, Principal of the Barbados Community College (BCC) listen attentively to Alissandra Cummins, Chairperson of the National Art Gallery Committee who talks about the Gallery yesterday at the BCC.??

Those persons involved in cultural activities will soon get another opportunity to share their comments on the draft Cultural Industries Development Bill.

That is the word from Permanent Secretary in the Division of Culture and Sports, Shirley Farnum, who disclosed that the Ministry would be hosting a stakeholders meeting for persons in the various disciplines to ensure their views and concerns were reflected in the legislation.

Ms. Farnum made the comments today at the opening of the Caribbean Art Documentation Centre at the Barbados Community College’s library.

Underscoring the importance of the Bill and the artists’ involvement in its development, she continued:?? "We hope to have you there [at the meeting] to share in the development of this very vital piece of legislation. Essentially what the Bill will do is ensure there is a regime of incentives which will allow artists to develop their talent and acquire funding for creative activities, such as cultural projects and cultural programmes. So, we are really looking forward to having the buy-in of the entire artistic community."

She added that those persons who wished to read the Cultural Industries Development Bill could access it electronically by visiting www.gisbarbados.gov.bb.

PS Farnum told the gathering the Ministry would like to see the cultural industries developed to the extent where economic returns could be seen from the island’s wealth of talent. "Cultural industries have, in fact, shown to be significant contributors to the GDP in a number of countries… There is so much value in being able to earn from your creativity and this is another avenue we are going to have to develop going forward," she pointed out.

Ms. Farnum also highlighted the accomplishment of Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and promised that the public would soon be further sensitised about it, including its outstanding universal value.


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