14 March 2022
Commonwealth Day 2022 was celebrated on St Helena with an assembly held at Prince Andrew School (PAS) today, Monday 14 March 2022. This year’s Commonwealth Day theme is ‘Delivering a Common Future’.
During the assembly the Speaker of the House and St Helena Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Branch President, Cyril Gunnell, delivered a welcome speech and spoke about the work of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. HE Governor Dr Philip Rushbrook read the message from Head of the Commonwealth, Her Majesty The Queen (see attached) who emphasised her commitment of giving service throughout her reign. Chief Minister, Julie Thomas, read a message from the Right Honourable Patricia Scotland QC, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth of Nations, and PAS Student Council President, Amy Thomas, read the Commonwealth Affirmation.
This year is also the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee so, for this Commonwealth Day, there was a special focus on ‘the role service plays in the lives of people and communities across the Commonwealth’. Guest speakers were invited to speak about the roles they play in providing a service that help and protect the lives of people and the community here on the Island.
Emergency Planning & Sea Rescue Manager, Simon Wade, spoke about the work and commitment of the emergency services, Acting Director for Children & Adults Social Care, Gavin Thomas, spoke about fundamental importance of providing social care to the vulnerable and elderly, Director of Education, Skills & Employment Portfolio, Wendy Benjamin, spoke about the role of education and training to improve the lives of the community across St Helena and the Commonwealth, and Tracey Williams spoke about work of the large number of voluntary organisations on the Island and their contribution to Island life, crafts, heritage, care and sport. Tracey concluded by encouraging those present to consider taking on a volunteering role.
Following the assembly, President of the St Helena Commonwealth Games Association, Nick Stevens, spoke about the value of youth and sports in the community, and about the Commonwealth Games team who will be representing St Helena in the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Nick challenged the students interested in sports to strive to represent the Island at the next games in Australia in 2026.
Shortly after, Speaker of the House and St Helena Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Branch President, Cyril Gunnell, and PAS Student Council President, Amy Thomas, raised the Commonwealth Flag at the Francis Plain Pavilion as part of the ‘Fly a Flag for the Commonwealth’ initiative. This initiative aims to inspire participants to join with others throughout the Commonwealth, a family of 54 nations representing around a third of the world’s population.
Commonwealth Day assemblies were also held at the Island Primary Schools. They were attended by Elected Members who read Her Majesty The Queen’s Commonwealth Day message.
#StHelena #CommonwealthDay #DeliveringaCommonFuture
14 March 2021