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5th International Children’s Friendship Festival

Private company hands over contribution to help group of 12 make the trip

For the 5th time a group of 12 children aged between 10 and 13 will be taking part in the International Children’s Festival to be held once again in Turkey this time in Nevsehir, (Cappadoccia) from April 17 to 27 and like always financial support is necessary to help make the trip a success.

On Saturday morning, the East Indies Company handed a cheque for R25,000 to the Ambassador for Women and Children Dr Erna Athanasius who will be leading the children on this exciting trip of cultural exchange and discovery.

Michael Saldanha, brand manager of East Indies, handed over the cheque to Dr Athanasius in a short ceremony at the meeting room of the Seychelles National Youth Council (SNYC) at English River.  This was in the presence of the 12 children, some parents and their two instructors Mary-Anne Ahmad and Bennet Accouche.

Organised under the auspice of the Office of Seychelles Ambassador for Women & Children each year for the past for years — in Seattle, Washington USA in 2013, Gaziantep-Turkey in 2014, in Normandy, France in 2015 and Antalya, Turkey in 2016, with this year’s group taking part, a total of 60 children would have had this fantastic opportunity to share their culture and way of life with other children their age coming from various parts of the world.

Thanking East Indies for this wonderful contribution Dr Athanasius said Seychelles’ participation in those festivals and its exciting programmes has always  been remarkable and very successful.

She noted that each year 40 or more children turn up for the audition but unfortunately so far it has not been financially possible to take more children in the group.

“It would be good to have more children on the programme as it is a great opportunity for them to meet other children their age from different countries to share our culture and tradition. It is really a great benefit for our small country as more and more young children embrace our culture and become small ambassadors of our cultural heritage sharing it with others from around the world as well as promoting it locally,” Dr Athanasius said.

“We really appreciate and we are very grateful for all the contributions we get and we want more people to see the benefits of such an event and continue to come forward to help us and who knows we can take more children in the future,” Dr Athanasius pointed out.

Mr Saldanha has for his part pledged to try and support the Office of the Seychelles Ambassador for Women & Children in this noble and worthy cause.

“It is always good and makes one feel proud to see our very young children performing our cultural dances with such precision and perfection and East Indies is proud to be associated with the cause which promotes our cultural identity,” Mr Saldanha said.

Meanwhile the group of six boys and six girls gave the audience a taste of part of the show they will perform on their tour.

Dr Athanasius availed of the opportunity to express heartfelt gratitude to the East Indies and all the other companies and businesses which have offered to help sustain the activity each year and the SNYC for providing the venue for the children to rehearse.

Source : Seychelles NATION


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