By Linda Straker
The EC$500,000 financial support given to the Spicemas Corporation from the National Lotteries Authorities will see most of it going towards the prize money for steelband competition, while the remaining will be used for general carnival expenses.
The presentation to the SMC was among a lump-sum distribution of EC$1,691,773.23 presented to 6 entities through the NLA social assistance programme in conjunction with Canadian Bank Note Company. Also receiving financial donations were the Poverty Reduction Fund for the Zero Hunger Initiative which received EC$500,000. the Hospital services which received EC$306,000; the National Cultural Foundation which received EC$100,000; and the Junior Murray Cricket Academy which received EC$6,773.
Joslyn Sylvester–Gairy Chairperson of the SMC received the cheque on behalf of the Board, and promised that despite the many challenges facing the statutory body, Carnival 2015 will be an upgraded product. “There will be some changes as we move forward,” she noted.
Spicemas Corporation is a statutory body, legally established in 2012 to organise, marketing, promote and develop Grenada’s Carnival. It is managed by a 12-member Board of Directors, and presently in almost $1 million in outstanding debt to service providers and stakeholders from previous carnivals.
The 2015 Carnival period will officially be launched on Saturday, 30 May, at the Roy St John Playing Field at Tanteen. The launch will showcase a wide cross-section of carnival activities, including the display of traditional and fancy mas’ bands, as well as calypso and soca acts. Standing arrangements provide for the winners of the 2014 soca and calypso competitions to perform at the launch.
Besides the money from the NLA, the SMC also receives EC$700,000 from Government, as well as financial support from other corporate bodies assisting in the sponsorship of the event, which is budgeted to cost more than EC$2 million.
Grenada’s Carnival will conclude on 12 with the last lap jump on the streets.