By anguillian December 18, 2017 10:45 Updated




In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, the inherent structural damage to the Morris Vanterpool Primary School has caused it to be relocated to a rented property, not too far west of the original school compounds in East End. And though some of the children might have missed their regular alma mater, the Festival de Noel Committee, under the chairmanship of Mr. Jerome Roberts, has left no stone unturned to bring joy and good cheer to the hearts of the young ones at this season, which is normally highlighted by Christmas activities in the East End area.
In speaking with Mr. Roberts on the bustling school grounds which energetically buzzed with cheerful children’s voices during Tuesday afternoon’s event, he explained: “The Festival de Noel Committee has existed for over fifteen years. The prime mission of the Committee is to raise funds for the Morris Vanterpool Primary School as well as the Vivien Vanterpool Primary School, the two schools within this area. We recognized after the passage of Hurricane Irma that we still needed to do something.

“Therefore, we thought it would be a great idea to still bring some Christmas cheer to the children of the community, as is accustomed. So, today, we are hosting what is a ‘scale-down’ version of our annual festivity. Normally, we would have Santa on hand with a treat evening. We would have a number of toys to give away to the children as well but, due to lean funding this year that has not been forthcoming. However, Santa has still made it here, and the children have more than enough to make them happy. What we are doing this afternoon (Tuesday, 12th December) is still in keeping with the festivities of the season.”

Mr. Roberts also made mention of the fact that this week marks the end of the term for cub-scout practice in the area. He noted that the cub-scouts regularly meet on the school grounds for practice with approximately thirty young men in attendance. “These practice sessions,” he said, “are co-sponsored by the Festival de Noel Committee and the Anguilla Cub-Scouts.”

Further, he expressed much appreciation to the entities which contributed to Tuesday afternoon’s festive children’s fair. He recognized these sponsors as: Flow, the Anguilla Social Security Board, Zemi Beach Resort, Tropical Distributors, Limin Supermarket, Safety Step and Vanburn “Andy” Brooks. He thanked them all for their contributions and expressed his gratitude on behalf of the Committee.
Finally, Mr. Roberts remarked; “We are so happy to know that we were able to put on this event for the children. The Festival de Noel Committee will be delighted to know that we have made the children happy again, despite the passage of the hurricane. This is not just for the kids, but it is for the enjoyment of the teachers as well. We also wish to thank the Education Department for breaking school early this afternoon so that we can entertain the children in this fun-filled festive activity.”
Festival de Noel is an annual event that takes place within the East End community during Christmas time. It creates an ambience of happiness, cheer and goodwill, and it generally features a festive occasion to which folks from all across the island gather together. Here, they share camaraderie, relish good food, and enjoy concerts, sports, and pageants as they amuse themselves in the fun and frolic of the Christmas festivities. This year, however, it is different. Due to Irma’s disruptive onslaught, much has changed, and Festival de Noel does not have a program for 2017.

However, The Anguillian wishes to congratulate Mr. Roberts and the Festival de Noel Committee for their community spirit and a job well done in respect of the school children.

By anguillian December 18, 2017 10:45 Updated


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