Basseterre, St. Kitts, August 31, 2022 (SKNIS): This year’s 39th Independence Anniversary will be celebrated under the theme “Refocus, Re-create, Redesign: Independence 39”. The theme was chosen from hundreds of entries that were submitted and was won by Xavienne Roma Richardson of St. Kitts.

During her August 31, 2022, appearance on “Working for You”, Ms. Richardson explained what inspired her to submit the winning theme.

“When I saw the Independence Theme Slogan Competition come up… I was like maybe this is my chance. There were certain parameters. It has to focus on talent development and sustainability so I thought about what that meant because those are both things that I am very passionate about,” said Ms. Richardson. “I am not a human resource professional but developing our human resources, our whole human people and capital is extremely important to me as is sustainability. I am a gender professional. My background is in gender and development studies so we do not do things for the short term, we do things that are long-lasting but that also makes it better for generations that come.”

Putting her passion for language and literature to play, Ms. Richardson added that she first thought about what would rhyme with 39, seeing that this year marks the 39th year since St. Kitts and Nevis gained its Independence from Great Britain.

“First, I thought about the words that could fit and then I thought about generally what is my vision for the country at least for the next five years because we are talking about terms of government, and what is my vision for our people in general,” she said, adding that there is this feeling that St. Kitts and Nevis has gone a bit off course. “I remember when St. Kitts and Nevis was really the envy of the region, there were so many people who had moved to St. Kitts and Nevis because we were thriving, we were doing well. So part of where all of the ‘re’ came into my theme was because we had to come back on track, we had to regain some of the momenta that we had lost, we had to refocus, re-create, redesign a future that really reflected sustainability, development of our people for all of our people,” Ms. Richardson added.

She added that the theme speaks about rebuilding St. Kitts and Nevis. It is not about starting from scratch, however, there is a need to be more innovative, thoughtful, considerate and accountable.

“There is a need for us to get back on track to define and decide for ourselves what we want to be and where we want to go. And as times move along you talked about globalization, existing in this global space, existing in a space where we are not here by ourselves,” said the Independence theme winner. “We are competing with every other country in the world, it means then that we consistently and continuously have to iterate, we have to go back to the drawing board, see if we are still on track, see if we are still relevant and if we are not then we need to do what needs to be done to make ourselves relevant and competitive.”

Ms. Richardson was presented with a cash prize of EC $1000.00. She expressed heartfelt thanks and appreciation to the Independence Committee for choosing her slogan.

Four hundred and thirteen (413) submissions were received from the 3-day Independence Theme competition. Entries were accepted from persons of all ages who are citizens and residents of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

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