A young woman, Ms. Mandy Lewis, who grew up in Guyana, but who now resides overseas, has been kind enough to share an experience which she believes was an encounter with a kanaima when she was a child growing up in Region 7, Guyana, South America.
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This Amerindian Heritage Month message was published in September, 2020 by the South Rupununi District Council. Three years later, the message is just as relevant and just as beautiful. We decided to republish it in 2023 in recognition of Amerindian Heritage Month 2023.
A few days ago, we made a Facebook post using the picture above of a little girl holding a painting of two eggplants, also called aubergine, and colloquially referred to in Guyana as boulanger or baigan. We captioned the photo, “Amazing Artwork Done by Guyanese Painter Azeena Tahsir.” The photo went viral on Facebook garnering over 32,000 reactions and over 1000 shares in just a few days.
This beautiful artwork along with the text explanation posted below was sent in by one of our fans, Guyanese Aaron Gangadeen.
Did you know…that in the country of Guyana, South America, they sometimes use a tractor and trailer to move a wooden house from one location to another? This happens when the owner of the house wants to sell the house but not the land, and they find a corresponding buyer.
Born in the town of New Amsterdam in the ancient county of Berbice, Guyana, South America, Dr. Sue Ojageer is a shining example of what hard work, focus, and a determined mind can achieve. At the tender age of 5, Sue left Guyana with her family as they migrated to a new life in the United States of America.
If you have ever wondered what is religion like in Guyana, you have come to the right place because we’re about to fill you in. Guyana’s approximate 800,000 people adhere to one of three major religions: Hinduism, Christianity, and Islam.
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President of Guyana, Dr. Irfaan Ali, announced today, Wednesday 12th of July, 2023, that Spanish will be made compulsory for students at the Primary Level. While it is not clear at what Grade of the Primary Department the language will be taught, the President expressed that his aim is to make students proficient in the language by the end of their formal education at high school, and hinted at starting off with Grades 4 or 5 of Primary School. The Ministry of Education will then expand and improve from there.
This youth of Region 9 is said to have suffered mental health problems and lost his mind after using excessive drugs in the Marudi Gold Mining Mountains while working there. The youth left his home and now roams the streets day and night…devoid of friends and family who are nevertheless praying that he returns to normalcy.
Robocop recently came into the spotlight after he stepped in and saved a police officer who was being brutally beaten by two persons (video posted at the end of this article). In an exclusive interview with the Guyana, South America publication, founder and CEO of Cyborg Protection Services, Eustace Abraham, shares deep insights into his personal life, career, and business goals.
Dormitories, called “dorms” for short, in Guyana, and perhaps also in other parts of the world, are constructed in the same compound of a school for the purpose of housing students who have to travel from far flung areas to a centrally located school.
Born the Garden City of Georgetown in the 1960s, novelist and scriptwriter, Geeta Outar Sirjoo migrated in her late teens to the twin Island country of Trinidad and Tobago. There, she fulfilled one of her childhood dreams in establishing herself as the CEO of “Geeta’s Creations” — a garment establishment which creates uniforms for companies and schools.
Growing up in under-equipped Guyana, South America has presented quite a few challenges to ambitious swimmer Daniel Claxton, but in spite of this, he has managed to keep his head above water – until he got a call for Spire Academy – a call which helped him take his abilities to the next level. This is story of Guyanese born swimmer and student Daniel Claxton who hopes to take Guyana to the Olympics come 2024.
The young daughter of a Berbician couple who earn their living through farming has stumbled upon a new passion: painting. And she’s taking it to a whole new level. Before discovering her love for painting, Azeena Tahsir worked with her parents, who are cash crop farmers, at their farm in Black Bush Polder, Region 6. But one day while at the farm, something happened that caused Azeena to “accidentally” awaken a latent talent which she didn’t even know she had.
In photo we have Jim Fouler who visited the Rupununi in the year 1959. While here, he climbed some of the biggest and tallest Ceiba trees to trap some harpy eagles. Mr Manoel Hendricks recalls seeing him walking on branches without fear or support.
Jennifer Lawrence, a US citizen, travelled to Guyana on a Study Abroad Program. She visited Yupukari Village – a place she would later call home.
Ten years ago, she made her country proud. In 2012, Sarah Hakh was the Caribbean’s best overall CXC student copping a record breaking 16 Grade Ones with all As on the profile grades. Sarah Hakh won the award for the Most Outstanding Candidate Overall in the Caribbean. As a result of her performance, her school, Abram Zuil Secondary on the Essequibo Coast, received the CSEC School of the Year Award for 2012.
Denesha Thomas, an Indigenous girl of the Arawak Tribe, was born and raised in Wakapoa village, Lower Pomeroon River, Region 2, Guyana, South America. She is the eldest of four sibblings: 1 boy and 3 girls. Now just twenty years old, Denesha is pursuing a career in teaching while doing art in her spare time.
A talented Guyanese artist who hails from the village of Karasabai in Region 9 has reached out to this publication to showcase his talent in the hopes of securing work, opportunities, and possibly a scholarship to further his art studies abroad.
Mr. Ivan Alexander Johnson (Sr), who completed his long and fruitful earthly journey in December 2017, was doubtless one of the the first pioneers of the Rupununi Savannahs of Guyana. He was one of many Rupununi trailblazers, who, in their own simple ways, unique personalities, and vision for making a successful living in what is still considered a remote region of Guyana, have facilitated the opening up of the Rupununi to the rest of the country and the world at large, and contributed to the economic and social wellbeing of the Region.
Now just 23 years old, John Edmund Lee, AKA Jungle Dan, was born in the town of Lethem in Region 9 in February, 1999. He is the first of four siblings. From the time he was six months old, Lee’s parents left him in the care of his grandparents who raised him.
Everyday, men across Guyana and the world wish their children happy birthday as they reach another milestone in their journey through time. So what’s so special about this one and why does it deserve a feature here? It’s the words spoken and the circumstances under which they were spoken. Azruddin Mohamed, a member of the Team Mohameds family, is a well known and much-loved businessman and philanthropist who has touched the lives of countless people across Guyana.
There is a saying that goes, “find a job you love, and you will never have to work another day in your life.” The same applies for business. Doing something that you are passionate about accelerates your performance. This concept is the key element within the success story of young Guyanese businesswoman, Tromain David, who harnessed her love for fashion and turned it into a profitable business.
Our Land, Our Life is a beautiful song astoundingly performed by Guyanese singer/performer Galina Edmund. The song, presented in the native language of the Arecuna tribe of Indigenous peoples of Guyana, expresses appreciation for the land and all it provides for the people that inhabit it. At the same time, it showcases the simple, beautiful, and sustainable lifestyle of the Arecuna Tribe of Indigenous peoples. The Arecuna Tribe of Indigenous are found in Paruima Village in Region 7 which is the village from which Galina Edmund hails.
Wayne Augusto Mann was born in Georgetown, Guyana, South America. His mother is of indigenous/European descent and his father, Afro-Guyanese. As a boy, Wayne’s mother traveled frequently between Georgetown and Region 9. As a result, the lad started his formal education at St. Ignatius Nursery in Region 9 but completed Primary School in Georgetown.
Guyanese gospel singer/evangelist, Emmanuel Dasrat, who goes by the stage name “Righteous Kid,” delivers a heartwarming rendition of his creation, “Never Leave Me” – a gospel song presented in Guyanese Creolese.
A Guyanese gospel singer/evangelist who goes by the stage name “Righteous Kid” has launched a new single called “Brand New Style.” The lyrics of the song are set in local Creolese Dialect that will be easily understood by native Guyanese. For foreigners, we will attempt to translate the lyrics into standard English.
The Creolese Language is a form of substandard English spoken by people across the Caribbean in countries that were once colonized by the British Empire. Guyanese Creolese is a Creolese dialect unique to Guyana and different from other variations of Creolese that are spoken in other Caribbean countries such as Trinidad and Jamaica.
The success of Aurelia Ibrahim at such a young age in one of the world’s most competitive and challenging fields is yet another beautiful example of a parent’s ability to recognize a child’s latent talents and abilities and help them to harness it. This key concept is the backbone of the success story of young Guyanese author, Aurelia Ibrahim, who is the published author of two books: “A Little Poet’s World,” and “A Picturesque Journey” – both poetry collections.
At a very young age, no more than a wee 12 years old, I learned a valuable lesson that would sustain me for the rest of my life, so far. Almost at every station in the journey of life, you will meet some bad people.
Caleb Benjamin is presently pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Guyana, but on the side, he has developed a profitable photography business that is quickly spiraling into a fulltime career – to the point that Caleb considered dropping out of the University to focus entirely on his photography career. However, after taking some sound advice from several well-meaning individuals, Caleb decided that he will do both – push through with his studies at the University of Guyana to obtain a B.A in Forestry and continue to develop his photography skills and business at the same time.
A young Guyanese woman living in the Bronx has published her first children’s book, which, aside from being beautifully illustrated and entertaining, incorporates a beautiful theme that inspires children to develop a healthy body and mind.
Guyana is a breeding ground for talent, and in this article, we’re going to feature an eight year old who has an unnatural natural ability for painting and art in general. Meet Deshonna London – the young Guyanese girl who was born on the 15th of October, 2012 at the Linden Hospital Complex to parents Shion Peters and Deon London.
Born in Queenstown on the Essequibo Coast of Guyana, Denise completed her secondary education at the North Georgetown Secondary School. She later studied advanced English and completed Cambridge Certification along with teacher’s training in Brazil which qualified her to teach English in Brazil.
Following through with a childhood dream can be a challenge. We often get distracted. For many people, these fiery dreams simmer down to nothing more than amusing, sentimental, or entertaining stories of the past. Then there are the special few, who, through unmatched resolve and determination, work hard and make it happen. These are the ones who live their dreams and inspire others to do the same. Dr. Celia McConnel is one such story.
Although Stan Brock spent nearly two decades of his life managing a cattle ranch in the Rupununi, he had traveled to many countries around the world during his long and purpose-filled life, and Guyanese should feel especially honored that he had requested before his death to have his ashes scattered over Dadanawa Ranch in the Rupununi Savannahs of Guyana.
Chutney music is a fusion of several genres of music including Indian Folk Music, Bollywood Music, soca music, and Caribbean calypso. It emerged against the backdrop of indentureship in several British colonies, including Guyana and Trinidad and is most popular amongst people of East Indian descent in Guyana, Trinidad, Suriname, and Jamaica.
Berlinda Francis, of Katoonarib Village in the South Rupununi Savannahs of Guyana, South America is a farmer, cook, and small scale rancher. She also has a strong and inherent love for animals. And in this context, she shares her story of adopting a pet tapir from the time it was only a few months old.
Jerry Marco is a talented youth from the Rupununi Savannahs of Guyana. As you can see from his paintings below, he is an extremely gifted artist whose adopted slogan is, “art is my life.” Jerry believes that one should pursue his or her dreams even though the prospects might at first seem limited because it is important to do what you are passionate about – what drives you.
The first people to have arrived in Guyana were the Amerindians who came from Asia via the Berring Straight supposedly in search of food. This ice passage later melted. After the Amerindians came the Europeans in search of the Golden City of Eldorado. The Europeans never found El Dorado. However, they set up sugar plantations in Guyana.
The conventional Arrival Day message seeks to glorify the East Indians’ arrival in Guyana and to celebrate the achievements and contributions of the East Indians in and towards Guyana. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But under the peaceful waters of cultural pride rages a deadly current of racism that few like to acknowledge. It is this unseen aspect of racial pride – the disunity created by unity – that Dr. Josh Kanhai seeks to address in his non-conventional Arrival Day Message.
As mentioned in our previous article, Indian Arrival Day, the attitude of the descendants of colonized East Indians of British Guiana towards their colonial past are wide and varied. Some are thankful for the voyage that brought them a new life and new opportunities while others detest the compromising and sometimes harsh conditions to which their fore parents were subjected during their voyage to the new world.
My great, great grandparents were the first batch of Coolies who came from India and settled in Guyana in 1838. My great, great grandfather came willingly, aged 21: young and strong, and looking for adventure. He came with 2 brothers. One brother died on the way and was buried at sea.
I personally have never seen a baccoo, nor have I seen evidence of it, nor do I want to. But I’ve heard so many stories about this strange demonic creature, all of them resounding with the same theme and description from people far removed in space and time, that I am tempted to believe that there must be some truth to the matter.
During my travels throughout the Rupununi Savannahs of Guyana, I’ve heard stories of the Kanaima. In fact, I first read about this frightening creature in an online publication which claimed that the Kanaima is a spiritual being which comes to execute vengeance for some wrong committed. Apparently, the Kanaima is “invoked” by someone and sent to harm someone as an act of revenge for some wrong.
Stephanie relates fondly that although her parents never encouraged to sing, she is pursuing her dreams of becoming a professional singer at full pace. Fueled by her passion and a deep-rooted confidence in her own abilities, Stephanie believes that all she truly needs to succeed in the music industry is her unquenchable passion to do so.
If you lived for any amount of time in Guyana, South America, you might have heard the expression “coolie man,” “coolie boy,” “coolie woman,” “coolie people,” etc in local dialect. In Guyana, the expression “coolie” is used colloquially to refer to someone of East Indian ancestry. But what is the etymology of this word? And what exactly does it mean?
Galina Susie Edmund was born on the 8th of April, 2003 in Paruima Village on the East Bank of the Kamarang River in Region 7, Guyana, South America. She attended the Paruima Nursery School, and then the Paruima Primary School where she wrote the Common Entrance Examinations and was awarded a place at one of Guyana’s top secondary schools – the Christ Church Secondary School in Georgetown, Region 4, Guyana, South America.
The story of the Old Higue is a Guyanese folklore passed down by word of mouth from generation to generation. It is not clear which ethnic group introduced this idea to the Guyanese culture, however, it is most widely circulated amongst the East Indian and African population of Guyana.
Sheliza Rampersaud describes herself as a 27-year-old “creative human” who grew up on the on the East Coast of Demerara, Guyana, South America. The youngest of three siblings, she has a passion for creating art, traveling, cooking, and reading.
Prime Minister, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips on the 21st of January, 2021 hailed Captain Michael Charles M.S, as a pioneer in showcasing Guyana’s tourism product to the rest of the world. The PM delivered the keynote address at the launch of Charles’s latest video, the “Sounds and Colours of the Rainforest,” which is the fourth video in a captivating series titled “Guyana -Yours to Discover,” that explores Guyana as an eco-tourism destination.
In an unprecedented, revolutionary move, two Guyanese doctors have teamed up to offer free phone and WhatsApp consultation for people who may need medical advice but may be unable or hesitant to visit the hospital.
Publishing a book is no ordinary task, but being published by Pearson, the world’s largest and most recognized publisher of IT books and learning solutions, is a task for the elite.
Fadia Reyolds lost her then 31-year-old son, Uriel Orlando Reynolds, in a tragic accident along the Soesdyke-Linden Highway on the fateful evening of Tuesday, January 12, 2021. It was a tragedy that would change her life in ways she never imagined possible. Fadia’s relationship with her beloved son was an exemplary one – a reality which accentuated the pain of his loss. This is her story….
Jennifer Lawrence, a US citizen who has migrated to and been living in the Central Rupununi Savannahs for several years, sees a need for more computer and internet literacy that will help to develop hinterland communities. Her dream is to set up a computer training facility to teach her fellow villagers how they can harness the power of the internet to promote their tourism products, sell craft, research, and so much more.
Guyanese born Leland Shepherd has been promoted to the rank of Brigadier General of the Arkansas Army National Guard in the USA. The momentous occasion marks the first black army officer to command the Arkansas Army National Guard.
Guyana Defense Force’s Captain Kaya Dover on 26th of June, 2022, made history by being the first men to swim across the Essequibo River, a distance of about 3 miles, in complete military uniform. Dover pulled off the daring stunt with his military uniform, including boots, which put an extra six pounds on his body and greatly increased the drag created by the water caught inside his uniform.
A ten-year-old indigenous girl has written a poem highlighting a worrying social issue. The poem is so profound, insightful, inspiring, and beautifully written that the reader has a hard time believing it was written by a ten-year-old.
Guyana’s First Lady, Arya Ali, was on the 12th of July, 2022 presented with a portrait of herself created by Guyanese artist, Compton Babb. The announcement was made by the First Lady via her Facebook Page. Mrs. Ali called the portrait “a captivating and truly amazing piece of artistic work.” And she referred to the artist, Compton Babb, as “one of our finest creatives.”
Reticia Henry was born with a special gift – the gift of representing the beauty of nature on canvas, and she hopes to one day share her gift with aspiring students, as well as sell her outstanding works of art – some examples of which you will see here on this page.
Navin Hansraj is the holder of many titles. A Computer Engineer by profession, he is also an entrepreneur, a humanitarian, a dedicated father & husband, a young leader, the CEO and founder of MMH Enterprise & Maya Fitness, a Rotarian, and the founder of Team Maya: a Non-Governmental Organization that provides a variety of services including a feeding program, clothing, and book drives to the community.
From ever since he knew himself, Tauseef had a passion for singing, and he explains that this passion was greatly helped and encouraged by his uncle, Akbar Khan, who opened a music shop in the same village within close proximity to his home when the lad was just 7 or 8 years old. Tauseef seized the opportunity to go over often to his uncle’s music shop and listen to music as well as hone his singing skills through practice. He related that his uncle, Akbar Khan, who is also an excellent singer, was very supportive of his dream of becoming a professional singer, and helped him to become a better singer.
He started painting when he was twelve years old. During his 7-year and counting painting career, the ambitious youth faced many stumbling blocks. For example, he has never earned enough money to purchase his own art materials. However, the determined lad made use of exercise books and other available material in expressing his artistic desires.
Ryan Huckumchand has a talent for singing as much as he has a passion for his Christian faith – and in this context, he plans to take worship music to a whole new level with an emerging genre called “Soca Gospel.” Soca Gospel incorporates some of our local Caribbean linguistic styles into songs of worship as you can see from Ryan’s professionally produced music video “Kinda Way.”
Guyana is a powerhouse of talent, and in this article, we’re going to highlight one who is off to an early start. Meet Kuwanau Roberts, the five-year-old who does wonders with a brush and a canvas.
Every year, the Rupununians hold a Rodeo show, and thousands of tourists flock from around the world to watch. But have you ever wondered how this all started? Here is the story.
For teacher’s day 2021 – October, 5th, we had the honor of featuring one of Guyana’s most outstanding veteran educators – a young man by the name of Kenrick Lewis who has touched the hearts of thousands of people and impacted countless lives throughout his 27-year long ongoing career. He is presently the Headmaster of St. Ignatius Secondary in Region 9, Guyana, South America.
Manley Thomas’ determination to succeed in life despite great challenges and the odds sometimes stacked against him is the driving theme of this story. The deaths of his mother and sister while he was still young were some of his greatest challenges – but he fueled his emotions in a positive direction – determined that their lives and sacrifices would not have gone in vain.
A superstition is a belief in something supernatural that has no scientific basis or logical explanation. For example, we have all heard the superstition that if a black cat crosses your path it might bring bad luck, etc. This is an example of a superstition of European origin.
A proverb is a general observable truth about life which has been passed down from generation to generation. Aside from the biblical book of Proverbs which is believed by many to have been inspired by God, there are many other proverbs peculiar to a particular people, region, or country.
The Wai Wais are originally from Brazil (ANAWA), now called Roraima. Through hunting expeditions, they became familiar with KANASHEN (GOD loves you). Kan is God in the Wai Wai language. Over years, lots of them inhabited the area and the population increased. There was a threat of an “invasion,” a police raid for illegal guns and a lot of families left the location. Some went back to Brazil, while some went to a place upriver of kanashen called Shafalimo.
I’ve decided to reprint this beautiful article which was posted on the Facebook Page of the author, Reanna Nickram, because it does an awesome job of illustrating the beauty, diversity, and richness of this great land of ours. For locals, it just reinforces what we already know. Reanna Nickram is a Guyanese citizen who resides with her family in Lethem, Region 9. In this beautiful anecdote, she expresses her profound love and patriotism for her country of birth, Guyana.
I’ve come across this really beautiful article from Guyanese author and psychologist, Dr. Telford Layne, and decided to republish it (with permission) because I think it’s a great article with lots of merits and I think all Guyanese should take a good read and let the message it contains sink it – because it applies not just to Afro-Guyanese – but to every one of us.
I was told that walking over hot coals is part of the celebration of St. John’s Day in the Rupununi Savannahs as well as other hinterland regions of Guyana, South America. One resident of the Rupununi told me that walking over hot coals on the night of St. John’s Day (24th) is a common practice in many communities. They say that those who are free of sin will not be burned when they walk on the hot coals, but those who are sinful will be burned by the coals.
Guyanese born Anna Maria Esther Roth (full name: Anna Maria Esther Roth Dias), presently residing in the border town of Bonfim, Brazil, next to Lethem, Region 9, Guyana, has a special passion – a love for animals that she describes as an energy that she was born with. Her love for animals transcends that of the average person, and her charitable works in caring for animals extend way beyond owning a few pets. In fact, Esther has created in her home an animal sanctuary which she refers to as “Animal Paradise.”
A student of St. Ignatius Secondary School in Region 9 has painted an outstanding portrait of the late Queen Elizabeth II of England. The painting is now a world famous one after it went viral after we posted it on the Guyana, South America Facebook Page. In just one hour, the post reached over 10,000 people and received hundreds of congratulations. It is so easy to see that there is an enormous reservoir of hidden talent behind that painting!
The story of Travel Marcellino, the young GDF commander from Region 1, is one of principle, integrity, honesty, and most importantly, beating the odds. We hope the sensational success story of Travis Marcellino, who grew up without either parent, will inspire you to always see the silver lining in every dark cloud, and to remember that crime is never an option.
Sharon Maas is a Guyanese born international bestselling author who presently resides in Ireland. Many of her novels feature events and settings of Guyana, South America. Through her writing, she raises awareness of her homeland.
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Historical evidence suggests that the Amerindians came from the continent of Asia “thousands of years ago.” And there are artefacts across Guyana which corroborate the theory of indigenous presence in Guyana thousands of years before the arrival of Christopher Columbus.
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