Thomas Vincent Ramos and Garifuna Settlement Day

Virtually learn and explore Garifuna heritage and Garifuna Settlement Day  

  1. Follow the National Garifuna Council: The National Garifuna Council is a non-governmental organization that works to preserve, strengthen, and develop Garifuna culture.  At the start of November, they officially opened the celebrations with a virtual opening ceremony.  The theme for this year’s celebration is “Garinagu: úara, here; awansera asta lidan liderenouga.” Garinagu: United and Strong, moving forward despite challenges. Follow their Facebook page for activities leading up to the 19th of November including the Yurumein which will be hosted at an undisclosed location (as a COVID-19 precautionary measure) and will be broadcasted live on their Facebook page starting at 6:00 a.m.
  1. Follow the Battle of the Drums: The Battle of the Drums is a non-profit initiative dedicated to the revival and promotion of Garifuna culture, particularly music and dance. Each year, various groups participate in drumming, singing, and dancing competitions and showcase. Visit their Facebook page to watch this year’s performances. 
  1. Tune in the NICH Houses of Culture: The Houses of Culture have been actively sharing educational material on Garifuna culture and history. These include photo slideshows and educational videos on various aspects of the culture from cooking videos to learning numbers.  
  1. Join a live session with Heritage Education Network Belize: Heritage Education Network Belize is a non-profit organization that was founded during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. For November, they have organized several live Facebook sessions as part of their Garifuna Cultural Project including a session on music, safeguarding Garifuna culture and language, and the impact of globalization on Garifuna culture. Learn more by visiting
  1. Explore and learn with ISCR’s Belize Cultural Celebrations Series: The Resources section of the Belize Living Heritage Website offers educational materials on various celebrations in Belize including the Yurumein and Garifuna Settlement Day. The video below introduces the history and significance of the celebration.  Click here to learn more about Yurumein which is a part of Belize’s national inventory of living heritage. 

About the Author: Ms. Phylicia Pelayo, is a Senior Research and Education Officer at the Institute for Social and Cultural Research. She holds responsibility for Community Heritage Development.  

Sources: (2016). Humphreys, Francis. A Walk through Dangriga. NICH; (2000). Thomas Vincent Ramos: The Man and His Writings. National Garifuna Council; (1997). Cayetano, Sebastian and Cayetano, Fabian. Garifuna History, Language, and Culture of Belize, Central America and the Caribbean: Bicentennial Edition; (1987). Leo Bradley. Thomas Vincent Ramos – Great Guide of the Garinagu. Community News (No. 2).

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