Interfaith ceremony kicks off Tunapuna/Piarco celebration week

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

TUNAPUNA WEEK: Tunapuna/Piarco Regional Corporation chairman Josiah Austin and CEO Kofi Chapman cut the ribbon at Constantine Park, Macoya Road, to official open Tunapuna Week. Photo by Angelo Marcelle

The Tunapuna/Piarco Regional Corporation (TPRC) commenced its Tunapuna Week with an interfaith ceremony at the St Charles RC Church in Tunapuna.

Chairman of the TPRC Josiah Austin, started his address by quoting the Gospel of St Luke, emphasising the significance of prayer and resilience when facing life’s challenges. He said the week’s theme, “Cultivating the Culture of Achievement and Ambition,” underscores the corporation’s commitment to transformational service.

“We ought always to pray and not lose heart; this list of Scripture encourages all to be prayerful and not to become discouraged when facing the challenges in life. As we begin our week of celebration, we have gathered here from different places and different religions to invoke God’s blessings over our region, our families and our nation by extension.”

Speaking with Newsday after the service, Austin said there are planned activities for the public, starting with a health fair in partnership with the North Central Regional Health Authority on Wednesday. He highlighted TPRC Services Day on Friday, inviting the public to learn about the corporation’s various departments, including disaster management and public health.

“We’re inviting persons from the public to come in and see what the corporation has to offer. A lot of people have questions—questions about what they do when we have disasters, questions about what they do about rodent infestation, about all sorts of different things, about infrastructural development.”

There will also be a youth festival on Saturday in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Development and National Service. “We have our cultural day on the main road, where we lock off the streets of the Eastern Main road between the Tunapuna Police Station and Royal Castle. And we just have parang soca, soca artists and gospel artists passing through. We also have large and medium pan bands from the region and also visiting regions.”

Addressing flood concerns, Austin said, “We’ve had several meetings with other agencies; we held meetings with the Ministry of Works and Transport drainage division. We’ve had meetings with the Housing Development Corporation this week, with Town and Country Planning and with our building inspector department. We continue to have meetings and we’re collaborating to treat those issues.”

When asked about crime, Austin said his office has collaborated with the Greater Tunapuna Chamber of Commerce and the Tunapuna Station Council to tackle security and safety in the district. “The last two days we’ve been putting up camera systems that started with the Tunapuna Station Council, camera systems that are now linked to the various police stations and linked to our municipal police.

“We started near the Eddie Hart Savannah and we have installed about nine more cameras. There are several other initiatives rolling out, including the emergency buzzers in the various businesses along the Eastern Main Road and we intend to carry that through the entire TPRC region.”