Trinidad-based filmmaker Lisa Wickham’s Foward Home:The Power of the Caribbean diaspora

Produced and directed by award-winning Trinidad-based filmmaker Lisa Wickham, this documentary film illuminates the findings of executive producer Keith Nurse's ground-breaking research project, "Strategic Opportunities in Caribbean Migration," which studies four Caribbean countries and their counterpart communities in global cities: Jamaica and London; Guyana and Toronto; Suriname and the Netherlands; and the Dominican Republic and New York City.

A documentary which reveals the economic power of the Caribbean Diaspora was screened at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO)’s Diaspora Forum in New York on June 5th as part of Caribbean Week in New York and Caribbean American Heritage Month in the United States.

The documentary, “Forward Home: The Power of the Caribbean Diaspora,” showcases the experiences of members of the Caribbean Diaspora who straddle the dual worlds of Caribbean Homelands and Global Cities as tourists, travelers and entrepreneurs, and the organizations that make the relationship work, according to Dr. Keith Nurse, the film’s executive producer.

“The documentary maps the uncharted territory of Diasporic tourism and provides empirical evidence to support what we have known anecdotally, which is that the Diasporic economy is of huge significance to the diversification and competitiveness of the Caribbean economy,” said Dr. Nurse, who is the director of the Shridath Ramphal Centre (SRC) of the University of the West Indies (UWI). The SRC is a training, research and outreach organization that services the Caribbean region in trade, industrial and development policy matters.

“Forward Home,” is based on an analysis of the Diasporic tourism and investment flows of four Caribbean countries and counterpart global cities – Jamaica and London; Guyana and Toronto; Suriname and Amsterdam; and The Dominican Republic and New York – and was shot in nine countries.

The Diaspora Forum is part of the program for Caribbean Week in New York – a series of consumer events and business meetings, showcasing the diversity and vibrancy of the Caribbean to thousands of New Yorkers and visitors to the Big Apple. The forum will be held on Tuesday June 5th from 6 pm to 8 pm at the Marriott Marquis hotel in the heart of Times Square and the Broadway theatre district.

Themed, Rediscover Home: Defining our Role, the forum brings together ministers, commissioners and directors of tourism, as well as senior tourism officials and the Caribbean Diaspora in an exchange of information on the unique selling propositions of the various destinations.

This year’s Forum will also feature presentations by Montserrat, which is celebrating its 50th carnival, and Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, both observing their golden jubilee. In addition, the CTO will give an update on its Rediscover Home program – a series of activities aimed at encouraging the Caribbean Diaspora to rediscover the Caribbean – including a loyalty card and the Diaspora website, www.onecaribbeandiaspora.com.

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