Awards were presented for excellence in academics, community work and entrepreneurship at the 11th annual Alliance of Guyanese Canadian Organizations (ACGO) celebration last Saturday night in Scarborough.
Pope John Paul 11 Grade 11 student Tatiyanna Williams-Britton, Narine Dat Sookram and Channaman’s Caribbean Corner proprietors Rudy Khan and Laura Lawrie were honoured at the event that coincides with Guyana’s Republic celebrations. Guyana achieved Republic status on February 23, 1970.
An honour roll student for the past three years, Williams-Britton has won Music, French and Language Arts awards. The avid trumpet player plans to attend McMaster, Ryerson or Waterloo universities.
Sookram has been an active member in Guyana and his Kitchener community since creating a youth cultural group when he was 14. He also established the Active Vision Charity Association that provides Guyanese schools with text books and other school supplies and hosts a weekly 45-minute radio show on CKMS 100.3 FM on Mondays. The musical show features soca, chutney and Indian classical sounds.
A home inspector, Sookram is also an emerging poet. He is the recipient of the 2009 Pakaraima award for Home Away from Home.
In addition to providing quality food and service, Channaman’s Caribbean Corner has sponsored myriad events in the Guyanese and West Indian community and contributed monetary donations to many causes.
Most of the funds accrued from last weekend’s celebratory event will go to the proposed establishment of a community and cultural centre. The AGCO has raised nearly $120,000 in the last decade.
“Acquiring our own facility is still the goal, but it has become more challenging in the tough economic times,” said the organization’s president, John O’Dell.
Approximately 20 organizations are affiliated to the umbrella body.