On Saturday, 9 February 2019, the Grenada Houston Association (GHA) celebrated the 45th anniversary of Grenada’s Independence with a Scholarship Gala Dinner attended by the Grenada Diaspora community in Houston, GHA members, supporters, stakeholders, and distinguished guests.
The guests were pleased to welcome Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Member of the United States Congress who serves as the Representative for the 18th Congressional District of Texas to address them, and also Shadel Nyack Compton, Managing Director of Belmont Estate, who was invited to give the feature address.
The dinner is an annual event organised by the GHA both to celebrate Grenadian Independence and to raise much needed funds for educational scholarships for Grenadian and Houston students. The Congresswoman, a regular attendee and supporter of the GHA, gave hearty congratulations and appreciation for the work of the GHA, particularly in the area of education by the scholarship program. She spoke with high praise of the President and membership and commended their contribution not only to the district, but also the motherlandGrenada.
She presented certificates of Congressional Recognition to the current President of the GHA, Ryan Nelson-Paryag; Past President, Joan Douglas; and members of the Scholarship Committee: Eric Barry, Dr Timothy Daniel, Grace Peppers, and Dr Edwin Felix. Nyack Compton also received a Congressional Recognition. GHA service awards were also presented to persons that selflessly contributed to the success and growth of the organisation – Neville Myles, Joan Douglas, Ann Henry and Rachel Patti Gibbs.
The president congratulated all awardees thanking them for their important contributions, praising their efforts and charging them all to continue their stalwart support of the organisation and its objectives.
The keynote speaker was Shadel Nyack Compton, Managing Director of Belmont Estate, who shared her own Diaspora journey from Grenada, to the US and and returning home to pursue her dream of transforming her family’s 350-year-old plantation into a “best practices” business in agro-tourism and food manufacturing.
Nyack Compton’s speech which was well-received by the attendees, emphasised the importance of giving back to one’s country, especially by supporting Grenadian products and investing in local businesses and entrepreneurs. She called on everyone present to act as ambassadors of their motherland, contributing in whatever way they can for the betterment of their country. Nyack Compton also highlighted the power of the Diaspora and the significant contribution they can make wherever they may be in the world. She especially encouraged support for the rural economy and scholarships from the rural communities in Grenada.
The GHA is committed to empowering the youth by offering scholarships of US$500 to students in Grenada and US$1,000 to Grenadian students attending University in Texas.
The GHA is one of the most vibrant and active Diaspora organisations, having achieved significant milestones over the years including showcasing Grenadian and Caribbean cultures, providing educational assistance through scholarships and aiding communities in times of crisis. Since 2007, GHA has granted over $36,000 to 40 students. In 2018 the GHA also assisted victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Maria in Texas and the Caribbean.
The Grenada Houston Association is calling all those who are interested, to support the organisation by donations and membership (US$5 per annum) and meetings are held every 2nd Sunday of each month at Houston International College, 12135 Bissonnet, Suite E, Houston. Texas 77099, please check www.grenadahoustonassociation.org for details.
The GHA also encourages Grenadian students to avail of this scholarship opportunity. Interested parties can visit http://www.grenadahoustonassociation.org/Scholarships.html, http://belmontestate.net/ or https://www.facebook.com/belmontestategd/ for further information and guidance or enquire via [email protected]