The Ethic Relations Commission (ERC) on Friday night launched a new educational campaign focused on promoting harmony and unity among Guyanese.
Several educational aids, which will be used to achieve the commission’s objective, were unveiled at the launch at the Pegasus Hotel in Georgetown.
Public service announcements, posters, brochures, billboards, a unity song, a play and a social media campaign will be deployed to promote the message of harmony and good relations.
With the commission having been reconstituted after a hiatus, the launch of the educational campaign is said to be a significant achievement as it aims to foster cohesion within the society. It is the first major project the reconstituted commission has launched.
“The Commission firmly believes this campaign, which is in keeping with its constitutional mandate to promote harmony and good relations, is vital in helping to enhance the environment to foster unity among all Guyanese,” Shiv Nandlall, the ERC’s Public Relations Officer, said in a statement to the media on the launch.
ERC Commissioner, Neaz Subhan, in an address, explained that the materials produced deliver “messages [that] are pertinent, captured in simple forms and are suitable for both traditional and new media.”
Subhan pointed out that while the ERC’s objective to promote harmony and good relations seems difficult, “it is not impossible and has to start at some point.”
The messages, he noted, provide examples to young ones as they endeavour to change a certain mindset.
He went on to state that the play “I AM US,” provides a reflection of the Guyanese society on sensitive issues which are often avoided but “must be addressed in the quest for national harmony, while underscoring why we cannot afford to be disunited.”
The materials produce will be distributed countrywide in schools, public offices, across airwaves and social media.
Social Cohesion Minister Dr George Norton and opposition parliamentarian Juan Edghill, who previously chaired the ERC, both congratulated the commission on its initiative. They both also pledged the support of their respective parties towards the work of the ERC.
The event also saw the law launch of a new ERC website.
Minister of Social Cohesion Dr George Norton, reads the message illustrated on one of the posters unveiled at the launch of the Ethnic Relations Commission’s new harmony campaign.