BVI, Caribbeanand International News

‘Festival suffers from underfunding’ - Festival Committee

‘Festival suffers from underfunding’ - Festival Committee

The Virgin Islands Festivals and Fairs Committee (VIFFC) said they have been operating on a budget of under one million dollars to stage the various cultural events and festivities across the territory this year.
Speaking at a press conference earlier today, the Vice-Chairman of the committee Birch Lettsome noted the committee received a $500,000 subvention from the government.

He said the VIFFC have raised some sponsorship but the money falls very short of the budget required for a typical festival celebration.

“It is very difficult for me to speak about this year without giving you a backdrop. The reality of it is I think festivals in the BVI, especially as we know it; a minimum of $1.5 to $2 million is required to pull off the events as we all know them. The pageants, the village, coney island. Everything you could possibly think of, $1.5 to $2 million would be the ideal budget. We were able to raise some sponsorship and that kind of stuff. So, we will be looking in an area of just under one million,” Lettsome said.

Chairman of the VIFFC, Dirk Walters, added the subvention is a budget that must be used for all celebrations.

“We are not talking only about Road Town Festival. We are talking East End, Carrot Bay, and Virgin Gorda Easter Festival as well and including Gospel Fest which the Heritage committee manages, including heritage month. It’s not just gospel fest. I think a lot of persons don’t have a full understanding but there is a whole slate of events which is in August,” Walters said.

Meanwhile, Head of the Entertainment Committee Stuart Donovan said the key takeaway from the situation is that festival celebrations are being underfunded.

“The key point here is that all these activities for festival are governed under the same subvention. So, we need to look at what it is, and I will go on record challenging the government because there is a lot of talk about festival overrun but the festival does not suffer from overrun. Festival suffers from underfunding,” Donovan said.

Additionally, Walters noted that plans for this year’s emancipation festivities have been in the works for a long time and he is excited about what has been planned, despite receiving the green light later than expected.

“We have been looking forward to this for a long time. For many months we have been planning, and waiting on the go-ahead. Right now, it is just the execution; making sure all the sub-committee get the support they want. All the volunteers, bear in mind everyone involved in this are all volunteers, including those of us on the executive committee, and those on the subcommittee, it is a lot of work. It is a lot of physical work. Everyone is on high gear, and we are going to try and deliver the best festival in years, regardless of the constraints,” the chairman said.

When asked about outstanding debts to vendors, Walters noted he is not aware of any but if there are any debts, they must be brought to his attention.

“I am personally not aware of any vendors that are owed. I am only involved in this, myself and the vice-chair and treasurer since our first task was the Virgin Gorda Easter Festival. As far as I know, we have paid off our bills and all the debts are paid. If there is anything outstanding, that has to be brought to our attention, but any vendors owed previously, I can’t speak to because I know I didn’t sign anything with anyone or any contract so I can only speak to what I know about,” Walters said.

Related Articles

Paper straws found to contain long-lasting and potentially toxic chemicals - study
FTX's Bankman-Fried headed for jail after judge revokes bail
Blackrock gets half a trillion dollar deal to rebuild Ukraine
Israel: Unprecedented Civil Disobedience Looms as IDF Reservists Protest Judiciary Reform
America's First New Nuclear Reactor in Nearly Seven Years Begins Operations
Southeast Asia moves closer to economic unity with new regional payments system
Today Hunter Biden’s best friend and business associate, Devon Archer, testified that Joe Biden met in Georgetown with Russian Moscow Mayor's Wife Yelena Baturina who later paid Hunter Biden $3.5 million in so called “consulting fees”
Singapore Carries Out First Execution of a Woman in Two Decades Amid Capital Punishment Debate
Google testing journalism AI. We are doing it already 2 years, and without Google biased propoganda and manipulated censorship
Unlike illegal imigrants coming by boats - US Citizens Will Need Visa To Travel To Europe in 2024
Musk announces Twitter name and logo change to X.com
The politician and the journalist lost control and started fighting on live broadcast.
The future of sports
Unveiling the Black Hole: The Mysterious Fate of EU's Aid to Ukraine
Farewell to a Music Titan: Tony Bennett, Renowned Jazz and Pop Vocalist, Passes Away at 96
Alarming Behavior Among Florida's Sharks Raises Concerns Over Possible Cocaine Exposure
Transgender Exclusion in Miss Italy Stirs Controversy Amidst Changing Global Beauty Pageant Landscape
Joe Biden admitted, in his own words, that he delivered what he promised in exchange for the $10 million bribe he received from the Ukraine Oil Company.
TikTok Takes On Spotify And Apple, Launches Own Music Service
Global Trend: Using Anti-Fake News Laws as Censorship Tools - A Deep Dive into Tunisia's Scenario
Arresting Putin During South African Visit Would Equate to War Declaration, Asserts President Ramaphosa
Hacktivist Collective Anonymous Launches 'Project Disclosure' to Unearth Information on UFOs and ETIs
Typo sends millions of US military emails to Russian ally Mali
Server Arrested For Theft After Refusing To Pay A Table's $100 Restaurant Bill When They Dined & Dashed
The Changing Face of Europe: How Mass Migration is Reshaping the Political Landscape
China Urges EU to Clarify Strategic Partnership Amid Trade Tensions
Europe is boiling: Extreme Weather Conditions Prevail Across the Continent
The Last Pour: Anchor Brewing, America's Pioneer Craft Brewer, Closes After 127 Years
Democracy not: EU's Digital Commissioner Considers Shutting Down Social Media Platforms Amid Social Unrest
Sarah Silverman and Renowned Authors Lodge Copyright Infringement Case Against OpenAI and Meta
Italian Court's Controversial Ruling on Sexual Harassment Ignites Uproar
Why Do Tech Executives Support Kennedy Jr.?
The New York Times Announces Closure of its Sports Section in Favor of The Athletic
BBC Anchor Huw Edwards Hospitalized Amid Child Sex Abuse Allegations, Family Confirms
Florida Attorney General requests Meta CEO's testimony on company's platforms' alleged facilitation of illicit activities
The Distorted Mirror of actual approval ratings: Examining the True Threat to Democracy Beyond the Persona of Putin
40,000 child slaves in Congo are forced to work in cobalt mines so we can drive electric cars.
BBC Personalities Rebuke Accusations Amidst Scandal Involving Teen Exploitation
A Swift Disappointment: Why Is Taylor Swift Bypassing Canada on Her Global Tour?
Historic Moment: Edgars Rinkevics, EU's First Openly Gay Head of State, Takes Office as Latvia's President
Bye bye democracy, human rights, freedom: French Cops Can Now Secretly Activate Phone Cameras, Microphones And GPS To Spy On Citizens
The Poor Man With Money, Mark Zuckerberg, Unveils Twitter Replica with Heavy-Handed Censorship: A New Low in Innovation?
Unilever Plummets in a $2.5 Billion Free Fall, to begin with: A Reckoning for Misuse of Corporate Power Against National Interest
Beyond the Blame Game: The Need for Nuanced Perspectives on America's Complex Reality
Twitter Targets Meta: A Tangle of Trade Secrets and Copycat Culture
The Double-Edged Sword of AI: AI is linked to layoffs in industry that created it
US Sanctions on China's Chip Industry Backfire, Prompting Self-Inflicted Blowback
Meta Copy Twitter with New App, Threads
The New French Revolution
BlackRock Bitcoin ETF Application Refiled, Naming Coinbase as ‘Surveillance-Sharing’ Partner