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CBCS meets with stakeholders in Sint Maarten. Start of follow-up financial stability meetings

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – Following the publication of the CBCS’ Financial Stability Report (FSR) in May 2022, the Centrale Bank van Curaçao en Sint Maarten (CBCS) started the round of follow-up meetings with stakeholders in Sint Maarten.

Meetings were held with the representative organizations of the banks and insurance companies and the Algemeen Pensioenfonds Sint Maarten, as well as the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Tourism, Economic affairs, Transport and Telecommunication, and the representatives of the Dutch government.

The main subjects of the talks were the FSR and the intended implementation of a deposit guarantee scheme. The financial sector representatives expressed their appreciation for the insights provided in the FSR.

Sector leaders were also able to confirm most of the findings of the FSR. They provided updates on latest sector developments and gave valuable input for the next edition of the FSR. New and upcoming developments in the financial sector that could affect financial stability were discussed.

Inflation and climate risk are highlighted as risk areas for the financial sector of Sint Maarten: high inflation, which is felt across the financial sector and the community, and hurricane preparedness are at the top of the institutions’ agendas.

In addition to the FSR, the CBCS will shortly send benchmark reports to the institutions, with which the institutions will be able to assess their performance as compared to the sector’s performance and standards, for early warning.

The CBCS will be looking forward to the upcoming round of stakeholder talks in Curaçao.

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STATIA INCREASES SURVEILLANCE FOR SIGNS OF MONKEYPOX

SINT EUSTATIUS (ORANJESTAD) - The Public Health Department in Statia is increasing surveillance for signs of monkeypox in light of the global spread of the virus, including 155 cases in the United States and 167 in the Netherlands as of the end of the day on Wednesday, 22 June.

There are no reported cases of the virus in Statia or the Caribbean, according to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), although the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports one case in Venezuela. As of 22 June, there were 3308 cases reported in 42 countries - mostly in Europe – where monkeypox is not normally reported, although the CDC has said it expects to see more cases in the US in the coming days. 

And with travel returning to pre-COVID-19 levels, health officials in St. Eustatius stress the need to raise awareness among both frontline health workers and the general public.

“Because of the many cases of monkeypox in the different countries, it is of great importance to bring awareness of the infectious disease to the general public of St. Eustatius,” said Shanna Mercera-Gibbs of the Public Health Prevention Clinic. 

Monkeypox is not a new virus - the first case was identified in 1970 – and is closely related to the virus that causes smallpox. It is transmitted from animals to humans, and usually does not spread easily between people.  The disease spreads through close contact and is less clinically severe and infectious than smallpox. 

Traditionally, people with monkeypox have developed a fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches and muscle aches, followed by a rash that starts on their face or in their mouth then spreads to other parts of their body — particularly the hands and feet.

However, the World Health Organization has said that it has also identified a unique pattern of symptoms among recent cases outside of Africa, including rashes limited to certain areas of the body like the genitals or mouth, meaning the virus is behaving unusually from the way it used to in the past.

“While the risk to the public is low, the Public Health Prevention Clinic urges everyone, including people who have travelled to affected countries, to be vigilant. If you think you have been infected, please isolate yourself and contact the Public Health Department immediately,” advised Mercera-Gibbs. “We will continue to liaise with the rest of the Caribbean Netherlands, monitor its progress and update you as necessary.”

Monkeypox is a reportable infectious disease category A, which means it’s considered to be of great public health importance, and the St. Eustatius Health Care Foundation is obligated to inform the Public Health Department of any cases immediately.

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Motorworld partners for 2nd Annual Islandpreneur Awards

SINT MAARTEN (GREAT BAY) - On June 30, 2022, organizers of Islandpreneur Live will host its second annual Islandpreneur Awards at Motorworld Showroom at 7 pm. This invite only awards ceremony will highlight those around the world who are making a significant difference for islands or on islands through their business or activities.

Motorworld is the leading car dealership on the island and has had an extraordinary impact on the community and economy of the island. Dedicated to community development and excellence, Motorworld has also seen its fair share of trials and is a symbol of resilience and progress. In 2017 shortly after the state of the art showroom was finalized, Hurricane Irma devastated the showroom. It was not only rebuilt but also has become a symbol of innovation.

“As an entrepreneurial organization, we understand the challenges that all businesses go through, especially those on Sint Maarten and within the region”, shares Managing Director, Tariq Amjad. Partnering with Islandpreneur means that we are encouraging an initiative that highlights the tremendous work done by amazing individuals. This partnership only reinforces our commitment to entrepreneurs and the community at large.”

Launched in 2021, Islandpreneur Awards recognized these individuals for their extraordinary work and the impact they have on islands. Jeff Hoffman (USA), co-founder of Priceline and former Chairman of Global Entrepreneurship Network as Global Leader of the Year for his impact on islands. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.(SXM/USA) son of the soil living in the US is an internationally acclaimed online business coach and youtuber who received the Pioneer of the Year award last year for his innovative ways of scaling businesses. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.(USA) received the Investor of the Year Award for her commitment in investing in women of color and in island-based businesses. Known as the Queen of Podcast, Heneka Watkis-Porter (JA) received the inaugural Islandpreneur of the Year Award for her work as a bestselling author of Podcast Power and her thriving show The Entrepreneurial You, which is a top 5 of podcasts for entrepreneurs and now has a syndicated TV show in Jamaica.

This year the Islandpreneur Awards will be hosted by Samuel himself and the keynote speaker is Haddy Folivi. Haddy is a global public relations expert based in the United Kingdom, who has helped companies and entrepreneurs amplify their profile in publications such as Forbes, BBC, Marie Claire while accelerating their growth. During the ceremony, only a few (8) entrepreneurs will get the opportunity to showcase their business and be in the room with leaders in the community.

The awardees will be announced on the night of the Islandpreneur Awards which will also be streamed live on Facebook for the wider community to enjoy. This year, a new award has been added solely for St. Maarten based innovators. Lastly,

Islandpreneur is a brand of accelerator programs, events, and projects designed to scale impact on small island developing states (SIDS) through innovation, finance, and entrepreneurship. The brainchild of Dr. Ife Badejo, president of Foundation INFOBIZZ and Founder of Produce Wealth Revolution Agency, Islandpreneur is designed to assist island-based entrepreneurs to have global impact. This is done through experiential and immersive learning, providing access to quality resources, and boosting entrepreneurial activity.

Islandpreneur Live is the signature event that brings together global leaders and experts together to provide island-based entrepreneurs and creators with strategies and tools to accelerate growth.

Launched in 2020, Islandpreneur Live has attracted co-founder of Priceline.com, Jeff Hoffman, international online business coach, Leslie Samuel, and venture capitalist turned youtuber with 3 million subscribers, Evan Carmichael. Experts from Central Bank van Curaçao en Sint Maarten, Dutch Caribbean Securities Exchange, Microsoft, and Meta (formerly Facebook) have also shared their expertise. Islandpreneur Live 2022, scheduled for June 27 - July 1, comprises in-person masterclasses (June 27 -29), an awards ceremony, and virtual summit.

To learn more about Islandpreneur Live, go to https://www.islandpreneur.co, stay connected on the Facebook Page, https://fb.com/iamislandpreneur or WhatsApp +1-721-520-0033.

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Governor’s Symposium 2022 set for June 27

SINT MAARTEN (HARBOUR VIEW) - On Monday June 27, 2022, the ninth edition of the annual Governor’s Symposium will take place at the American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC).

The annual Governors symposium is a platform created by Governor drs. Eugene B. Holiday, for stakeholders from a cross-section of Sint Maarten’s community to highlight, discuss and address important societal developments and policies issue.

The objective of the Governor’s Symposium is to promote good governance as a pillar for national development. It is designed to foster discussion based on presentations delivered by national, regional, and international experts that sensitize leaders of our society to take initiatives directed at the further development and strengthening of national programs and policies.

The 2022 Governor’s symposium will focus on the theme: Energy transition in the Caribbean – challenges and opportunities. Governor Holiday views energy transition as critical for the sustainability and future development of our country. The keynote speaker for this year’s symposium the President of the Caribbean Development Bank, Dr. Hyginus Leon. 

Also Participating in the symposium are:

The Head of Transmission & Distribution of Saba Electric, Mr. David Leonce, as featured speaker;

The Acting Temporary Manager of NV. GEBE, Dr. Sharine Daniel, as panelist;

The General Manager of Sol Antilles, Mr. Robert Jan James, as panelist;

The Manager of DYNAF Sint Maarten, Mr. Werner van de Zilver, as panelist; and

The Managing Director of the Sint Maarten Development Foundation, Ms. Makhicia Brooks, as panel moderator.

As is customary the minister with responsibility for the pertinent policy area, in this case the Minister of Housing, Spatial Planning, Environment and Infrastructure, Egbert Doran, will provide an outline of Government’s perspective.

The event is by invitation only, however for members of the public that are interested in viewing the event livestreaming will take place. The livestream will be available to the public from 08:30AM, on Monday June 27, 2022, and can be accessed via this link:

https://youtu.be/JH0MKXrxwzA

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VOICES Foundation Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Hosting Emancipation Day Celebration

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBUGR) - VOICES Foundation Celebrates its 10th Anniversary of their Cultural Ancestral Emancipation Day Celebration at the Emilio Wilson Park on Friday July 1st, 2022, from 12pm until 8pm says President and Founder Ms. Nkosazana Esther Illis.

For the past two years the event was held virtually because of the Covid-19 Pandemic. This year we will be at the Emilio Park and it is promised to be a Great event.

With the Theme “You Too Are VOICES” the Foundation will be honoring persons and organizations in our community that have been and are still a Valuable Contributor to VOICES Foundation. We are and will always be forever Grateful to each and every one of you as we humbly say Thank you!!!!!!!!!

The general public of St. Maarten is invited to come out and celebrate with us. Be part of this family fun day where local food, drinks, arts and crafts will be on sale by our vendors. Bring your blankets and enjoy some of our local music by none other than DJ Pebbles.

Come and hear our very own Tyler Percival on the steel pan, Shantillia Weekes will entice you with her lovely voice while Generation New Status STM Drum band will remind you that it’s a Celebration you don’t want to miss.

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TV 15 & Start the Conversation – Prostate Cancer Awareness

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Over 4000 people have been reached since launch of the “Start the Conversation – Prostate Cancer Awareness Campaign” by the Positive and Elektralyets Foundations on June 9, 2022, via the Caribbean Cinemas screens and social media platforms like Facebook.

The foundations expect this number to increase as it takes its Prostate Cancer awareness message to TV. TV viewers will have the opportunity to see Mr. Gordon Snow of the Daily Herald as he shares his personal experience of his diagnoses, treatment, and recovery of Prostate Cancer this Friday, June 24 at 7PM. Tune into TV 15 on Telnet and on Cable TV15 for those who still have the cable box.

The Positive and Elektralyets Foundations, in recognition of June being the National Men’s Health Awareness, have embarked on an awareness campaign entitled “Start the Conversation – Prostate Cancer Awareness.”

The campaign was kicked off on June 9, 2022, with an interview on GROOVIN with Elektra on OASIS 96.3 FM with Mercedes Van Der Waals and Mr. Gordon Snow of the Daily Herald. Mr. Snow shared openly and in detail of his diagnoses, treatment and recovery related to prostate cancer.

This interview was videotaped and edited by Orion Production Studio and can be seen this Friday June 24, 2022, at 7pm on TV15 on Telnet and on cable TV15 for those who still have the cable box. Orion Production Studio is located on Backstreet# 172 and can be reached via telephone 1-721-580-0627 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., was enthusiastic about their role in the awareness campaign for prostate cancer.

The Positive and Elektralyets Foundations objectives for the “Start the Conversation –Prostate Awareness campaign” is to make our community more aware of prostate health, motivate our community to take action to get checked, and save lives of many men in our community. The Foundations decided to use various communications channels like including TV, Radio, Movie theaters, social and print media, to extend the reach the of the campaign, while keep the message consistent.

The Positive and Elektralyets Foundations will conclude this month’s recognition of National Men’s Health Awareness by featuring Cindy Peters in an interview on GROOVIN with Elektra on OASIS 96.3 FM on June 30, 2022, at 9 am. Cindy will share her experiences on caring for loved ones who have been diagnosed with cancer.

The foundations hope that the “Start the Conversation” campaign will encourage the men in our community not to be too embarrassed to start the conversation on Prostate Cancer awareness with their health care provider, as early detection saves lives. Shelly Alphonso and Mercedes Van der Waals of the Positive and Elektralyets foundation said “Starting the Conversation is easy. If you are a male over the age of 45, please ask your doctor for a prostate specific antigen test (PSA). We urge the men in our community to Man UP and Check UP”.

For more information contact: Shelly Alphonso President of the Positive Foundation on cell: +1-721-580-9658, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via our web page at www.positivefoundationsxm.com and Mercedes “Elektra van der Waals-Wyatt President Elektralyets Foundation cell: +1-721- 523-7418 email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Be The Change now accepting applications for educational grants

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – Be The Change Foundation is now calling on young persons aged 25 and under to submit their application for a grant towards their tertiary education. 

Since 2015, the local NGO behind Philipsburg’s artistic transformation #ColorMeSXM and SXM DOET, the country’s largest community service event, has presented annual grants between USD 500 and USD 2,000 to well deserving and community oriented youth.

The fund, established to honor the legacy of the foundation’s late founder Erika Cannegieter, has disbursed USD 33,646 in educational grants to St. Maarten residents to date.

Interested persons aged 25 and under should be able to demonstrate their involvement in the community, present their latest school report or transcript, complete the online application form and upload all relevant documents in order to apply.  

The application can be found at: https://bethechangesxm.com/scholarship-application/ and the deadline is July 21, 2022. The winners of the awards will be announced on July 27, 2022.

For more information, please contact Be The Change Foundation President Melanie Choisy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Construction firms, Builders and Trenching Contractors must be Prepared to Activate Storm-Ready Plans

SINT MAARTEN (GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – The Ministry of General Affairs Fire Department/Office of Disaster Management (ODM), is appealing to the building sector, to have storm-ready plans in place for quick activation in the event the country is threatened by a weather system during the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season.

Construction activities, trenching and excavation works, are taking place throughout the country, and at building and construction sites, materials and debris laying around could pose a threat in the event of a storm/hurricane threat to the nation.

Contractors and builders must have a plan in place to secure building sites before a storm/hurricane strike. This is also applicable to trenching and excavation contractors.

Building sites must be storm-ready within a 48-hour period before the arrival of a storm/hurricane.

Contractors, trench/excavation works and home builders during severe weather are responsible for securing building sites for the protection of the public, and property.

Materials such as plywood, shingles, zinc, and other construction materials could become flying missiles capable of impaling zinc roofs, windows, or anything in its way.  

Construction debris can cause severe damage to property and lead to possible loss of life. Every construction site supervisor and/or foreman is advised to review their annual hurricane season plan with respect to what action they will be taking at their building site whether it’s a small, medium, or large house, or commercial enterprise project.

As a rule, all building and trench work sites should be kept organized and clean. Arrange timely pick up of trash (discarded old zinc, wood etc.) dumpsters, and only keep materials on site you will utilize during any given week especially bearing in mind that we are in the hurricane season and keep construction equipment secure.

All businesses should also see to it that their premises are kept clean of any debris as part of a preventative approach.

Any planned building/construction supply deliveries should be postponed if there is a storm/hurricane threat to the island within a 48-hour period.

When a tropical storm or hurricane watch is issued 48-hours before a system is forecast to hit, remove all scaffolding, and remove, or safely secure, all building materials and equipment; and secure cranes and other heavy equipment of this nature.

Sub-contractors should also be alerted to their responsibilities as well with respect to securing or removing their materials and equipment.

Stop job processes that will likely become damaged by the storm/hurricane, such as window installations, house wrap, or landscaping. Complete those tasks that will likely prevent damage, such as concrete work, closing in a house, or filling in foundation excavations.  

Follow through with a quick inspection of your building site once a tropical storm/hurricane watch has been issued for the country. Do not wait until the last minute to inspect your job site, as you will need that time to go home and secure your own family dwelling or office/work yard. Employees will also need time to do their own personal final storm/hurricane ready preparations.

Once the storm/hurricane is over and the All Clear has been given by the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) headed by the Prime Minister of Sint Maarten, you may return to the building site for damage assessment and inspection.

For general information about preparing prior to a storm/hurricane strike, visit the Government website: www.sintmaartengov.org/hurricane where you will be able to download your “Hurricane Season Readiness Guide’ and “Hurricane Tracking Chart.”

Listen to the Government Radio station – SXMGOV 107.9FM - for official information and news before, during and after a hurricane.

For official weather-related information, check out the website of the Meteorological Department of St. Maarten (MDS): www.meteosxm.com or visit their social media page Facebook.com/sxmweather/

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EPIC cleanup event in Hope Estate. Dozen more planned

SINT MAARTEN (HOPE ESTATE) - On June 25, from 7 am to 8:30 am, Environmental Protection in the Caribbean Sint Maarten (EPIC) is hosting a cleanup at Hope Estate, starting next to Marie Genevieve de Weever School. The cleanup is the second of a dozen cleanups EPIC will be hosting this year as part of their “Why do we litter? – Sint Maarten” project funded by R4CR.

As part of this project, volunteers will not only assist with community cleanups but also collect data on littering habits and insights of both residents and visitors. With this data, EPIC aims to formulate sustainable and actionable follow-up steps toward preventing litter in Sint Maarten.

“During the last cleanup in the Cay Hill area, with the help of 27 volunteers, we collected 626 pounds of litter in an hour,” share EPIC’s Project Coordinators Riddhi Samtani and Laura Bijnsdorp. “We look forward to another successful cleanup in Hope Estate this Saturday, June 25, at 7 am.”

Volunteers can sign up via https://www.volunteer.sx/o/EPIC1/opportunities/EPIC-Hope-Estate-Cleanup/54031 and will be provided with gloves, reusable garbage bags, and refreshments. Volunteers are advised to wear closed shoes and are requested to download the ‘Clean Swell’ app on their (charged) phones, beforehand, to help collect data during the cleanup.

Updates about this project and cleanup dates can be found on EPIC’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/epicislands. For more information or inquiries into collaborations, please contact the Project Coordinators at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

EPIC Sint Maarten is a non-profit organisation founded in 2007 with the mission of protecting the Caribbean environment through research and community-based action in Sint Maarten. This project, “Why do we litter – Sint Maarten?”, is funded by the Government of the Netherlands under the Sint Maarten Trustfund, implemented by Resources for Community Resilience (R4CR), administered by VNGI, and overseen by The WorldBank. For more information about EPIC’s work visit: www.epicislands.org.

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Entrepreneurship World Cup Is Back. Entrepreneurs from across the Caribbean can now apply to for a chance to compete & showcase their business globally

SINT MAARTEN (GREAT BAY) - The Entrepreneurship World Cup (EWC) is open and is accepting applications until 10th July 2022. The program offers a chance to pitch on a global stage for a share of US$1 million in prizes plus additional investment opportunities and in-kind support.

Since launching in 2019, the Entrepreneurship World Cup has attracted 400,000 registrations from 200 countries and connected founders with over US$3M in cash prizes and another US$256M worth of perks and free support and services. Again, this year Entrepreneurs from 200 countries are expected to participate globally. The Entrepreneurship World Cup is hosted globally by the Global Entrepreneurship Network and Monsha’at.

Caribbean Entrepreneurs will have a series of opportunities to pitch and showcase their businesses as they advance through the EWC program. On the National Level, entrepreneurs who complete their applications will be screened and shortlisted to compete within their country. The winners of each national competition from across the Caribbean will be invited to compete in the EWC Caribbean Regional Finals for a chance to be listed as one of EWC Top Global Finalist. In October, all global finalists will be invited to participate in an intensive, virtual startup bootcamp and the top EWC100 will advance to pitch live at the EWC Global Finals held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in November 2022 for a share of US$1 million in prizes.

But EWC is more than just a global pitch competition with a shot at life-changing prizes. It elevates entrepreneurs from all stages—idea-stage, early-stage, growth-stage or beyond— by providing them with tools and resources to grow their venture.

All applicants will receive access to EWC Accelerates, a virtual training program that helps entrepreneurs hone their skills and increase their chances of winning their national competitions and advancing to the Global Finals.

The EWC online platform offers founders who complete an application access to more than $25,000 worth of perks. Access to perks is at the discretion of the partners. The top EWC100 Finalist will receive $100,000 in in-kind services from partners such as AWS, Freshworks, Google Cloud, Hubspot, Stripe, Zoom and more.

Cristal Legrand of Le Grand Voyages is the official national organizer for EWC St. Martin. In 2021, Ms. Legrand was appointed by Caribbean Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Livelihoods (COESL) and Global Entrepreneurship Network Caribbean and hosted St. Martin’s first EWC National Competition. She also serves regionally as EWC Caribbean’s Chief Implementation Officer, assisting with the establishment of EWC in each island throughout the region.

“Competitions like these open doors, equips the entrepreneurs and connects them with resources that are otherwise not available on their islands. Entrepreneurship World Cup offers both the competition and the support to inspire innovation, drive impact and increase our global network. I am excited to see our local entrepreneurs evolve throughout this process and hopefully compete on the global stage. This is a unique opportunity to show the world the treasures within our 37 square miles”, said Ms. Legrand.

There is no application fee to ensure all entrepreneurs have an equal opportunity to participate. Therefore, we encourage all entrepreneurs in Sint Maarten/St. Martin (idea stage and non-profits included) to apply before the July 10th deadline. The top 12 applicants who will compete in the national finals will be announced on Wednesday 13th July 2022. The winner of EWC SXM will advance to the EWC Caribbean Regionals on Sunday 11th September 2022.

The EWC St. Martin national finals will take place Saturday 30th July 2022. Further details will be announced in the coming weeks.

To learn more about Entrepreneurship World Cup visit https://EntrepreneurshipWorldCup.com

To apply today go to: https://signup.entrepreneurshipworldcup.com.

For more information and inquiries, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or WhatsApp (only) +1-721-586-5855.

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