UK in Jamaica » Kingston, Jamaica

“Go de R**s to sleep…” & other memories of Calabash

Calabash

I have been to literary festivals in the UK – usually in rain soaked parts of England.  This was my first time at Calabash.  Jamaica’s biannual literary event is more than a festival.  And also less.  It is two and a half days of readings, interviews and performances by Caribbean and non-Caribbean writers set against the backdrop of Treasure Beach, the waves lapping behind the speakers, and a not-so cool … Read more »“Go de R**s to sleep…” & other memories of Calabash

The Challenge of Change

Feature image for:  The Challenge of Change

Change is rarely easy. It challenges our normal basic human preference for continuity, for things to ‘remain the same’, to be predictable, to be stable. The psychology of change has been studied extensively and it is acknowledged that when change is enforced (and not desired) it is usual for people to go through ‘stages’ ranging from shock to denial to anger and eventually acceptance. Migration from one country to another … Read more »The Challenge of Change

Strength in numbers…working with International Organizations

One of the first things you learn as a practitioner or student of International Politics, is about the role and function of International Organizations. For me, that was many moons ago, but those lessons are nonetheless still useful. In fact, when you consider how the forces of globalization have compressed the world into one massive economic and political web, International Organizations have remained remarkably steady, and are increasing in scope and numbers. … Read more »Strength in numbers…working with International Organizations

The message is still gender equality

Highlight from the International Women's Day 2014 Breakfast discussion in Jamaica

Today, gender equality is just as relevant as it was in 1910, when International Women’s Day was first celebrated. Despite legislative and social advancements in favor of women’s rights, women and girls in countries like Jamaica, continue to face discrimination,violence, and a lack of economic opportunity. For its part, Jamaica has enacted legislation, which coupled with certain cultural shifts, aim to protect and enforce the rights of women. Incidences of inequality … Read more »The message is still gender equality

The UK Bribery Act

Feature image for:  The UK Bribery Act

A key message that we have been working on is spreading the word that a clear nexus exists between strong institutions, an effective rule of law and transparency, on the one hand, and economic growth, on the other. Read more »The UK Bribery Act

What are Embassies for Anyway?

Feature image for:  What are Embassies for Anyway?

I was very interested to see a letter last month in The Jamaica Gleaner newspaper with the above title, expressing confusion and scepticism as to the purpose of Embassies. Given that I work in one (a High Commission is just the name for an Embassy between Commonwealth Countries), this set me thinking. I love my job and feel hugely privileged to represent my country in Jamaica. But my colleagues and … Read more »What are Embassies for Anyway?

A Tale of Two Conferences

The best, and worst, part of my job is that I have to go to many conferences and seminars. When they are done well they are stimulating, generate solutions and you come away having met great people and with an inspired outlook. When they are done badly, I know many of you have experienced those and understand my frustration so I needn’t go any further. I recently had the pleasure … Read more »A Tale of Two Conferences

It all started with a Facebook post…

1073063_525000787591477_218546347_o

Last week we gave 7 laptop computers to a basic school in St Elizabeth. In furthering our public diplomacy objectives, our aim this time around was to engage with rural Jamaica but even more so to further impact the education sector beyond our Chevening scholarships. We decided to solicit the help of our Facebook users via a competition that would locate an early childhood institution in rural Jamaica  in dire need of computers. About two months after we ended … Read more »It all started with a Facebook post…

The Death Penalty in the English Speaking Caribbean: A Jamaican Perspective

When the English-speaking Caribbean countries attained independence in the 1960’s, 1970’s and 1980’s, their new sovereign Constitutions contained Bills of Rights which created a new and critical opportunity for attacking the death penalty. Each of these Constitutions now contained fundamental rights guarantees against cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment or treatment and in favour of fair trials. Read more »The Death Penalty in the English Speaking Caribbean: A Jamaican Perspective

DEPORTATION: STIGMA & SUPPORT

Feature image for:  DEPORTATION: STIGMA & SUPPORT

The majority of my working day is spent designing, developing and managing projects, to support Jamaican nationals returned from the UK settle back into a productive and fulfilling life in Jamaica.   Most of this is informed by listening to Jamaicans the majority of whom tell me they need practical support such as help in getting documentation, finding work and securing accommodation.  Nearly all tell me that once home they want … Read more »DEPORTATION: STIGMA & SUPPORT