Soualiga Newsday Features


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Soualiga Newsday Features (2660)

Soualiga Soccer Association established

PHILIPSBURG - The FC Soualiga Women's Soccer Team is proud to announce that, as of Wednesday the 27th of August 2014, the team is officially notarized as the Soualiga Soccer Association.  Present at the signing were Notary Ms. Meredith Boekhoudt, the Association's President Ms. Fleur Hermanides, Vice-President Ms. Kandice Franklyn, Secretary Ms. Lieneke Haandrikman, Treasurer Ms. Suenah Martis, Technical Advisor Mr. David Forsythe, and Ms. Nathaly Pieters.


The main purpose of the Association is to develop, promote and regulate the sport of women's soccer on Sint Maarten. This will be achieved through providing a safe environment, education and structure. More in particular, the association will focus on having its members actively involved in the sport of soccer; organizing, promoting and participating in competitions locally, regionally and internationally; as well as representing and acting as the agent for its members either towards coordinating bodies or in negotiating educational scholarships, professional contracts or similar.


This is a milestone the FC Soualiga Women's Soccer Team is proud to have achieved, as it has been working towards becoming an Association for the past few months. It is a step towards bringing women's soccer to a higher level locally as well as being recognized on an international scale.

The Soualiga Soccer Association is momentarily in the process of organizing its Second Annual International Women's Soccer Tournament to be held on October 24th, 25th and 26th at the Raoul Illidge Sports Complex. During this tournament, FC Soualiga will be competing against different soccer teams from throughout the Caribbean.

The team has been growing exponentially since its inception in April of 2013, under the St. Maarten Soccer Educational Foundation.  Therefore, a decision was made to split the team into separate age groups. Currently, the Soualiga Soccer Association has 3 female teams, an under 12 team, a under 18 team and an 18+ senior team.

The registration for each of the teams is open for all levels to join. Contact the Soualiga Soccer Association throughThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our Facebook page FC Soualiga. The registration for teams to participate in the International Tournament is also still open, via the above mentioned contact information.


Minister of Education Lourens-Philip: ONE TABLET PER CHILD

PHILIPSBURG - Minister Patricia Lourens, charged with the portfolio of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports, is proud to announce the approval by the Council of Ministers of the “One Tablet per Child” project.

The purpose of the project, the Minister stated in a press-release, is to provide all children in elementary schools with a tablet, starting with the students in Public Education, which fall directly under the Ministry. The Minister on Tuesday, August 26th, presented the Council of Ministers with several related policy documents to ensure that the project was embedded in an ICT Policy in Education in general and in particular in an ICT policy for the Schools.

“The preparation of this project took several months to be completed because I wanted to ensure that everything would be in place to guarantee the sustainability and continuity of the project after the transition of government.

When I took office a little over a year ago I put together a list of goals that I would have liked to accomplish during my short tenure as Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports. Introducing ICT in education topped my priority list as I am convinced that providing our students, the future human resources of this island, with the necessary skills and knowledge in the use of information and communication technologies will guarantee accelerated sustainable economic and social development for St. Maarten. The funds, fls. 4.277.775,46 were secured from the division of assets from the Antillean Bureau  of Telecommunications and Post. The St. Maarten Development Fund will manage and supervise the disbursement of the funds.

Only through an ICT literate labour force, will St. Maarten be able to dispose of a critical manpower pool of highly skilled professionals, such as engineers, technicians, and software developers who will support a growing local ICT industry. This industry has the potential to contribute to the diversification of our one pillar economy” Minister Lourens stated.

She continued to say that the “One Tablet per Child Project” will also provide career opportunities for talented St. Maarteners and others to participate in the ICT knowledge generation. Where the schools themselves are concerned the administration and management of these institutions will also benefit from this project through effective use of ICT tools in their day to day operation, thereby transforming the educational landscape of St. Maarten.

“This innovative step in Education is the realization of one of my dreams for education, and I congratulate the community of St. Maarten as well as the entire education sector of St. Maarten with the approval of this project”, concluded the Minister who is the former Head of the Government’s Division of Education Innovation. (Contributed by the Cabinet of the Minister)


Nature Foundation Sea Turtle Watch Group Cleans Sargasso Seaweed from Simpson Bay Beach

SIMPSON BAY BEACH - The St. Maarten Nature Foundation Sea Turtle Watch Group, a group of citizens that are specifically trained to assist the Foundation in Sea Turtle Conservation, cleaned a large section of Simpson Bay Beach of the Sargasso Seaweed which has been plaguing the island.

Sargasso Weed plagued the Caribbean and St. Maarten in 2011 and 2012, with the Foundation having to warn swimmers to avoid swimming in Guana Bay and other beaches due to the large amount of Sargasso Weed and many beach front residences and hotels having to continuously clean washed up Sargasso. The resulting large influx of Sargasso Weed has been due to a suspected southward shift in the Gulf Stream, which has pushed the Sargasso Sea– an area of the Atlantic Ocean where Sargasso Weed is in thick concentration, south to our area.

Some ten members of the Sea Turtle Watch Group cleared the beach of the Sargasso seaweed in order to ensure that hatchling sea turtles can make their way safely to the ocean.

Sea turtles have existed for well over 180 million years, even before the dinosaurs. St. Maarten is one of the few places in the region that has a nesting population of sea turtles, so we should do all that we can to protect their nesting areas.

Sea turtle population numbers have plummeted to dangerously low numbers throughout the past century due to human impacts, bringing many species close to extinction and causing them to be listed as critically endangered. In order to reverse this trend, all sea turtle species are now protected by international laws and treaties as well as local laws. Based on ARTICLE 16 and 17 of the Nature Conservation Ordinance St. Maarten it is illegal to kill, wound, capture or pick-upsea turtles. It is also illegal to directly or indirectly disturb their environment resulting in a physical threat or damage or to commit other acts which result in disturbance of the animal. It is also forbidden to disturb, damage or destroy sea turtle nests, lairs, or breeding places. Also, it is forbidden to pick-up or to destroy the eggs of any species of sea turtle.

If you notice any nesting activity or are interested in joining the Sea Turtle Watch Group please call the Nature Foundation office at 5444267 or email the Foundation at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


NIA set to open school year with new classes

PHILPSBURG—The National institute of Arts (NIA) reopened for the 2014-2015 school year on Monday, September 1 with a full roster of established and new classes at the John Larmonie Center.

Classes being offered for the new school year include Ballet, Modern, Creative, Jazz, Musical Theatre, Afro-Caribbean, African, Folk Dance, Hip Hop, Modern, Brain Dance,  Yoga, Pilates, Conditioning,  Bharatanayam, Belly Dance, Capoeira, Zumba ,Sound Engineering, Art of Laughter, Performance Skills, Drummer, and Choir. Newer classes also being offered for this artistic year are Gymnastics, Visual Arts, Salsa Classes, Sound Engineering and Afterschool programs. 

With the assistance of NIA instructor, Peggy Ouelerich, the Gymnastics program will be taught by Gratienne Riom, an instructor, who runs her own gymnastics school on the French side of the island, Club de Gym SXM. Riom is licensed to hold competitions on St. Maarten.

“NIA’s Gymnastic program will be held at the Asha Stevens Hillside Christian School in Cay Hill, with the aim making our students competition ready. This class is open to students 3 and up and will include floor exercises, balance beam and tumbling and various other gymnastic techniques,” stated Co-Director of NIA, Arlene Halley.

Salsa class is also new to the NIA schedule and will be taught by dance instructor, Davy Pivert winner of the TelCell's Sabor Latino Salsa Dance off.  This class will be open to adults and children at the beginner level.

Visual Arts is also being introduced this year with a new class. Silvia Carty will provide classes in textile, art and craft making. Classes will provide participants with an outlet for self expression and motor skills development.

NIA will also be offering courses in Sound Engineering. The course aims to teach the basics of sound engineering. Students will also learn the history of sound equipment, how various sound equipment works, including where and when they are most effectively used. Students will also acquire knowledge of basic studio skills, open-air stage setups, in-door setups and setting up and mixing their own recordings.

In addition to their regular classes, NIA has been providing In-School and Afterschool programs, during the morning and afternoon hours, to various schools including the 6 schools that fall under the Foundation of Catholic Education. 

“NIA offers a wide variety of creative, expression classes geared towards offering a holistic integrated approach to learning. Unique to NIA, this program uses the visual and performing arts as vehicle to introduce students to St. Maarten culture in a meaningful and tactile experience that celebrates and honors those pioneers who forged this island nation, and vice versa use culture as a vehicle to access the arts After School Classes to all schools within NIA’s After School programs,” stated, NIA Co-Director, Clara Reyes.

For more information on NIA’s class schedule call 543-0600 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. To register for classes visit NIA’s office at the John Larmonie Center, on weekdays between the hours 3:00 pm and 8:00 pm and Saturdays from 9:00am – 12 noon. 


Prime Minister Wescot-Williams Bids Farewell to Local Young Cricketer

SIMPSON BAY, SXM AIRPORT - The Prime Minister of St. Maarten the Honorable Sarah Wescot-Williams bid farewell to local young promising cricketer Shaquille O’Neil Martina at the Princess Juliana International Airport on Wednesday.

Martina is on his way to Barbados where he was offered a full-ride scholarship to play on the University of the West Indies’ Combined College Campus Team, one of the premier cricket training teams in the world.

“I am very proud of Shaquille for his accomplishments. He in fact turned down a scholarship to study in the Netherlands to pursue his dream of playing cricket and representing St. Maarten in doing so. I am sure that we will hear and see many more good things from Shaquille in the future,” commented Wescot-Williams. Martina will be pursuing his degree in General Management while at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill campus. (Contributed by the Cabinet of the Prime Minister)


TelCell Breakthrough organizers open SMS voting for upcoming talent search event

GREAT BAY - TelCell customers are being invited to get in on the search for St. Maarten’s top talented youngsters by voting for favourite performer in the upcoming TelCell Breakthrough talent search event.

TelCell Breakthrough will be staged at the Casino Royale, Maho, on September 27, with 25 performers competing in four different categories.

A panel of judges will name the eventual winners in front of a packed audience on the night of the contest, but before that, organizers of the event want members of the public to have their say, and vote for their own winner and favourite act long before the artists go on stage. The final results will be announced on the night of the contest.

“All they have to do is send in an SMS message to 8844 stating the contestant number of their favourite act. They can send in as many votes as they want and at any time of the day,” said co-organizer of the event Ms. Angel Richardson.

The names of the finalists and their numbers are:

# 1 Rumari Rogers

# 2 Michelle Sullivan

# 3 Paul Brown

# 4 Stefano Maietti

# 5 Dylan Jospeh

# 6 Brandon Potmis

# 7 Tommy Lee Busby

# 8 Rijkman Hodge ...

# 9 Tristan Defoe ...

#10 Generation New Status (GNS STM) 10

#11 Tevin Williams

# 12 Renaldo Connor Jr.

# 13 Angelica Brown

# 14 Quan Gordon

# 15 Arias-4 ( Ismae van Greuningen, Francia Adamus, Kimberly van Heyningen, Khadija Joseph)

# 16 Latanisha Jasaron

# 17 Yash Daryani

# 18 Sabrina Gourdet

# 19 Adriano Lake

# 20 Deveny Elferink

# 21 Serenity Martinus

# 22 Sha-Neisha Gijsbertha

# 23 Sinatra Bauld

# 24 Joey Erato

# 25 Zack Phipps

“As we saw last year, the SMS poll will help to keep interest, excitement and anticipation for the show leading all the way up to the finals,” Ms. Angel Richardson.

“It’s a lot of fun and it really gives the performers a boost knowing that there are fans out there already rooting for them,” she said. 



RETREAT ESTATE - On Saturday 6 September the scout year will open its doors again for the youth of Sint Maarten. Baloo Merlyn Schaminee, Chief Commissioner, in an interview says that after weeks of vacation she and the leaders are ready and prepared to guide our youth in the experience of Scouting. “Scouting is not something you teach children”, she goes on explaining. “Scouting is guiding and coaching children to explore and discover their own talents”.

Being a scout means mastering the Crafts of Scouting. These crafts begin with who you are. They help you see who you can become. They take you where you want to be. Crafts of Scouting is divided into 3 types: 1) Scoutcraft is preparing for Scouting’s adventures and for live; 2) Woodcraft is understanding, appreciating and caring for nature while you travel and live in the outdoors; 2) Campcraft is learning skills useful along the trail, in camp and beyond.

Scoutcraft, is what you do to prepare yourself to be the best Scout you can be. It’s about making the most of your talents to become an effective leader and a good citizen. It means getting into good physical shape so that you are ready for the outdoors, for sports and for remaining healthy. Scout craft also means staying mentally awake by understanding how you learn and by exploring the world around you. It includes understanding how to get along with others and using good judgment to make wise decisions.

Mastering the first-aid skills of Scout craft will help you manage risks and act effectively during an emergency. Scout craft skills provide the building blocks you need to become a responsible young man/woman. They will help you apply the scout oath and Scout Law in your daily life. They can guide you as you become a leader in your patrol and troop and in your responsibilities as a member of your family and a citizen of your community and nation.

In the outdoors scouts can build a lasting enjoyment and appreciation for the natural world. This is called Woodcraft, the deep commitment to learning about and protecting nature. Woodcrafts also offer exciting ways for scouts to learn about the environment and to better understand the importance of the natural world. Woodcraft expects those who use the outdoors to accept responsibility for taking care of it. This is the principle of “leave no trace behind”. Woodcraft also encourages Scouts to give back to the land by helping conserve, restore and protect the environment.

Campcraft are all the skills scouts can use to hike, cook, navigate, and use modern and traditional tools. Campcraft is about being smart in planning your adventures, preparing for them and conducting yourself once you are on your way. Using campcraft skills will challenge you and build your confidence. Understanding how to use and care for a pocketknife, a saw and an ax and knowing when NOT to use them, have always been important Scouting skills. Lashing together bridges, signal towers and other pioneering structures links boys and girls today with Scouting of the past. Being able to light a fire without using matches on a cold rainy day on the beach is a mark of an expert outdoorsperson.

Combined with Scoutcraft and Woodcraft, Campcraft prepares Scouts to take care of themselves in the outdoors while they take care of the outdoors too.

The Mohican Group of Scouting Antiano takes this opportunity to invite the youth of Sint Maarten to join our club and the Scout movement. Ms. Merlyn Schaminee-Miguel, District Commissioner and Mohican Group Leader, sends a call out to parents, care takers, teachers and school leaders to stimulate children to join the Scouting movement. The group meets every Saturday from 9.00 till 12.00 at their clubhouse in Retreat Estate. (Contributed by Mohican Group of Scouting Antiano)


Man arrested for fire-arm possession

SIMPSON BAY VILLAGE - On Saturday August 30th at approximately 11.20 p.m. in the vicinity of “Reggea Pool Bar and Grill” in Simpson Bay Police patrol was approached by a man who stated that shortly before he was threatened with a handgun by another man who he knows.

After being threatened the suspect gave the gun to another man for safe keeping. The victim pointed out the man who had the gun in his possession at the time. The officers approached this suspect as he tried to walk away.

The officers saw when the man threw an object under a parked car. When the officers looked under the car they found the handgun the man had in possession. This suspect was arrested immediately for illegal fire-arm possession.

The fire-arm was confiscated. The suspect with the initials D.R.C. (28) was arrested on the spot and taken to the Philipsburg Police station where he remains in custody pending further investigation. (Contributed by the Police Force of Sint Maarten)


Water Production Plant Point Blanche II

POINT BLANCHE - Minister Cornelius De Weever, responsible for production and distribution of water, has received word from Seven Seas Water that the equipment and installations with a long lead-time have been ordered and are available for the construction of the second seawater reverse osmosis plant, the Point Blanche II plant.

The long term Water Supply Agreement of Government with Seven Seas/AirFin, signed in November 2012, includes the supply, construction and operation of two new, state of the art reverse osmosis plant. These plants are modular systems capable of producing 3700 m3 per day each.

At an average household consumption of half a cubic meter per day, one plant produces sufficient water to supply 7400 homes on a daily basis.

The agreement states that the second plant shall be operational mid February 2016. Earlier this year (2014) SSW informed Government of its decision to build the second plant in 2014 if GEBE could install electricity and water lines to supply electricity to the plant and take in water from the plant. To this date, neither the Minister of Health responsible for water Cornelius De Weever nor the government has not received an answer from GEBE management, the Board of Supervisory Directors or its “Shareholder” representative. GEBE is not ready yet, as even the new pump station, buildt to take in the water from the first plant, is not connected to the grid, let alone being operational.

Having the second plant in service, leads to a very advantageous position with respect to installed capacity for production of drinking water, as it comes with no additional cost for Sint Maarten until February 2016. The second new plant will further safeguard the production of drinking water for the community and allows other production units to be scheduled out for maintenance.

Maintenance of storage tanks and water lines would be possible without running the risk of not being able to supply water to customers. The Harbour and GEBE could expand the profitable venture of supplying water to ships. More water could be supplied to the French side, which is also beneficial for Dutch Sint Maarten. SSW has committed itself to build the second plant as soon as GEBE can provide the infrastructure to supply power and take in water produced by the plant.

The Water Supply Agreement of Government and Seven Seas Water also include the supply of two water tanks. The first one is in operation. GEBE has however halted the construction the second water storage tank in Point Blanche for unknown reasons. The foundation has been completed and all tank sections are in Sint Maarten storedin containers awaiting action of GEBE. (From the Cabinet of the Minister of Public Health)


USM alumni host Youth forum

POND ISLAND - The "Students Stand Up" Youth Forum was organized by the USM Alumni Foundation on Tuesday evening in order to provide the opportunity for students to voice their perspective and concerns about various situations prevalent throughout St. Maarten. 

With youth of various ages in attendance at the University of St. Martin, the Forum provided an outlet for the youth to be involved in the shaping and direction for reform of the education system, labour market, career development, and other pertinent areas affecting the ability for our youth to grow and prosper.

President of the USM Alumni Foundation Stuart Johnson said, "It surely was an informative and interactive session with our special invited guest." 

Josianne Artsen, Immediate Past President of USM and Deputy Minister Plenipotentiary gave a comprehensive presentation on education "From the Cradle to the Grave." "I am honored for the opportunity to hear from my youth and to be a guest at this forum," says Josianne Artsen. "We've been doing a lot of talking over the course of the political campaign.  As a visionary leader in education, I recognize the importance of listening to the people we will be representing in parliament; particularly our youth, which is my area of passion and expertise." 

Additionally Stuart and Johnson and Paula Gordon, representing as President and Vice-President of the USM Alumni Foundation as the hosts of the event, touched on the importance of this election.

"Regardless of your political party or candidate choice, I urge you to go out and vote massively in this first parliamentary election," Johnson concluded. 

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