With Caribbean Wellness Day 2016 right around the corner, Non-Communicable Diseases` Coordinator, Nurse Valarie Williams has been talking about this year’s program of events planned to mark the occasion.
Nurse Williams said that Caribbean Wellness Day is observed on the second Saturday in September each year, and this year’s celebration falls on 10th September under the theme “Healthy Children in healthy Environments.”
However, according to Nurse Williams, Antigua and Barbuda will be observing the occasion beyond Caribbean Wellness Day itself by joining with several organizations and groups to host a series of activities.
“We will be having a week of activities as we are partnering with the Medical Benefits Scheme and the Antigua State College. There are a number of Non Governmental Organizations as well, particularly the Rotary Club, who will be hosting the annual Caribbean Wellness Day Walk”, Nurse Williams said.
A church service at the Parham SDA Church will be the other activity that will take place on the day, where Minister of Health and the Environment, Molwyn Joseph will deliver the Caribbean Wellness Day Message.
Nurse Williams added that the sister isle of Barbuda will also be fully involved in the celebrations as they will be having a number of events to mark the occasion.
“Barbuda as well will be having activities for Caribbean Wellness Day because there is an NCD task force over there and they will be doing three major events including a debate in the secondary school just like we will be doing with State College over here. They will also be hosting a program on Abundant Life Radio and on the 10th, the curtains will come down with a grand “Step It Up” program which will see water games taking place, beach volleyball, football and cricket matches as well as lime and spoon races and so on”, she noted.
Nurse Williams, who is also the Chairperson of the Wellness Committee in the Ministry of Health and the Environment, is urging the general population to take better control of their lives and begin to evaluate what is necessary and what is not in order to help live a longer, healthier life.
“We need to be realistic, so we are advising people to look at what they are doing and see what they can do individually to prolong their lives and live a healthier lifestyle. Therefore we are advocating physical activity, proper diet in terms of the sugars, fats, salts, alcohol and tobacco use and try to reduce those”, she added.
Caribbean Wellness Day is a 2007 initiative that was established at a summit in Port of Spain, Trinidad by Health Ministers in the Caribbean Community and is celebrated annually by all Caricom member states.