Today is Garifuna Awareness Day. This day is normally observed the Thursday before the 19th of November which is Garifuna Settlement Day. The festivities got on the way on PlusTV’s Rise and Shine this morning as guests Gwen Nunez Gonzalez, Veronica Arzu, and Joshua Arana.
According to Gonzalez, there are still some misunderstandings about the Garifuna culture, hence the reason for Garifuna Awareness Day. She went on to describe the Garifuna flag and its symbolism.
Rise and Shine Morning Show Guest: This flag tells our story. The black is our African Ancestry, and the struggles that we’ve been through, and the struggles that we continue to go through here in Belize and in the Dias perm, because in Belize people still don’t want to be identified as Garinagu, especially in the City. They would call them Kerub, and when they speak Garifuna, they try to demean you. The white represents peace, and the yellow means hope. Hope for a better tomorrow, hope for a better treatment, hope for a better day, and also our Arabic and Carib Ancestry. Then the logo now, this circle, is the bigger version of this Riguma. The Riguma, is a very crucial part of the Garifuna, the cassava, baking process. These are the mountains of St. Vincent, somebody asked me once if they were birds. These are the mountains of St. Vincent, our history. Traditionally we are farmers and fisher folks, so this is a man in his dory, and women with 2 types of baskets. The one like a knapsack, and then they Fannay. So that emblem is a snapshot of our heritage.
Garifuna Settlement Day is celebrated worldwide within the Belizean Garifuna community. The Garinagu, according to Nunez, remain passionate about their cultural survival. This morning’s guests shared some of that culture with the Plustv audience. livened up the set with Garifuna drumming and singing.