Category Archives: member Updates

Olga Lopes Seale and Vivian Lee meet again

Olga Lopes Seale and Vivian Lee meet again in Barbados after over 40 years

Isabelle and Vivian Lee with ¡ “Auntie” Olga Lopes Seale in Barbados

Olga Lopes Seale and Vivian Lee re-connected again after many years when Vivian visited Barbados with his wife, Isabelle, for a short vacation in June. While in Barbados they were interviewed by Cyril Bryan of Guyanese Online.
They are now both 91 years old now, and were glad to meet again and reminisce about early broadcasting and entertainment in Guyana, in the 1950s, when they were at Radio Demerara, and he ran a successful advertising and music business.
Vivian has been residing in Vancouver, British Columbia, since 1985 after spending seven years in France. In Vancouver he was one of the founders of the Guyanese Cultural Association of BC in 1986, after a visit there by then President Hoyte brought out the Guyanese and started the process. He believes in continuous learning and action, and earned a degree in English from the University of British Columbia. He wrote and edited a book entitled Super Seniors in 2004, which chronicles inspiring life stories of people over 65 achieving their goals.
Dame Olga Lopes Seale is still doing her charity work in Barbados, driving her little SUV around helping kids and families in need. She recently collected $50,000 (US$25,000) in her annual Fun Run sponsored by companies, schools and individuals in Barbados.
Olga Lopes Seale was a pioneer of radio broadcasting and responsible for exposing musical talent in Berbice. She was equally successful as a broadcaster in Barbados after emigrating there in 1964 with her Barbadian husband. As a broadcaster in Guyana, Olga Lopes-Seale was responsible for programs like Birthday Requests; The Ovaltine show; Yours Truly Olga, the Radio Demerara Needy Children’s Fund. She was inducted into the Caribbean Broadcasting Hall of Fame in August 1997.
In 2002, she, as well as Vivian Lee, received the Guyana Folk Festival 2002 Wordsworth McAndrew Award. These awards, named after the distinguished Guyanese folklorist Wordsworth McAndrew, are awarded to recipients for their contributions to Guyanese folk and popular culture.
From 1957 to 1979 Vivian Lee had a Record Store, Advertising company, as well as a recording company ACE Records at Robb and King Streets. He was a broadcaster, public relations specialist, songwriter, and cultural promoter.
A very creative man he was, writing the famous radio character Mrs. Snodgrass; creating the lyrics for ¨Down at the bottom floor”, popularized by Lord Canary and promoting national and international musicians like Johnny Braff, who was a very popular local artist with many hits in the 1960’s. He also produced one of the early Guyanese films, the musical comedy, ” If Wishes Were Horses”.
(Guyanese Online – July 2010 Newsletter). Continue reading

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Update for Members – June 11, 2010

11 June 2010

Dear Members

Just an update to let you know what the Guyanese Canadian Cultural Association of BC has been doing so far this year.

Well, a new board was voted in at the January 2010 AGM. By now you know that Clyde Duncan (president), Mike Barringon (vice president), Lara Veerasammy (treasurer), Roweena Bacchus (secretary), are the executives. Other board members are Linley Shelton (communications chair), Tanuja La Fleur, Sylvia Jemmott, Wayne Jemmott, Everton Weekes (social committee) and Meheram Sugrim, Lucyanne Joseph, Carol Campbell are members at large. We also have the following past-presidents Dr. John Farley, Roy Taylor, and Basil Statia to complete the entire board.

We donated $250.00 to the Union Gospel Mission from the proceeds of last dance, held way back in the fall of 2009.

Since then, the grand-daughter of Bertie London, Rama Diallo, who is a contestant in the Miss Universe Canada pageant approached us for financial support. The Association along with individual board members, Clyde Duncan, Sylvia Jemmott, and Wayne Jemmott were able to contribute a total of $600.00 to her campaign.

The Guyanese Association (GCCABC) along with the British Columbia Organization of Caribbean Cultural Associations (BCOCCA) held a fund raising event in the wake of the earthquake, for Haiti as many others did here in B.C.

We are on the move. We have contributed news stories to the Guyanese Online newsletter through Cyril (Cy) Bryan, a Guyanese Canadian who resides in Barbados, and who is the Vice President of the Guyanese Association of Barbados Inc. The newsletter also has a blog http://www.guyaneseonline.wordpress.com to which you can contribute if you are so inclined. We are hoping to have our own blog soon.

Just a reminder: our ‘Independence Dance’ is Saturday, June 12 at South Arm Community Centre, 9020 Williams Road, Richmond. It starts at 7:00 pm and tickets are $15.00. See you there!

Roweena Bacchus, Secretary

Guyanese Canadian Cultural Association of British Columbia Continue reading

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Guyanese Canadian Cultural Association of BC

The Guyanese Canadian Cultural Association of B.C. has been in existence since 1989. There are about 3,000 Guyanese in British Columbia, Canada. However, we could only properly account for about 500 or so, as most Guyanese are assimilated into Canadian society at large. Here are some examples of our members, who live and contribute significantly in British Columbia:

Guyanese-born engineer, Trev Sue-A-Quan lived in China, his wife and son are born Chinese and he spends quite a bit of his time within the Chinese community. Trev has written a couple of books on the Chinese migration to British Guiana and Cuba: Cane Reapers and Cane Ripples.

Gerry DeCarmo, one of the stalwarts of our organization, who made his mark in real estate; left his fortunes to quite a few charita-ble organizations in Canada.

Roy Taylor, past President of the association, as an employee of Acrow sold over 100 Bailey Panel Bridges in British Columbia. In fact, there is one across the Demerara River in Guyana.

Dr John Farley, past and first President of the association, has achieved worldwide prominence as a specialist in HIV/AIDS issues. Honoured by the Canadian Liver Foundation and Guyana Awards [Canada], for his contribution to the community.

Dr. Bert Allsopp, past executive member of the Association, is a notable marine biologist who has established the international fisheries aid program at Canada’s International Development Research Centre, UBC, providing notable projects in 37 countries.

Aubrey Bacchus, the longest serving Guyanese-born, person of colour of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in British Columbia. Recentlyretired after 20 years’ service.

Joe Schuler, retired Air Canada Captain, Heavy Jets, after 35 years of service.

Significant Accomplishments:

The significant accomplishments of the association are our contributions to the various charitable organizations in British Columbia; our contributions to flood relief in Guyana; as well as sending container loads of equipment through the charitable auspices of CN Rail from B.C. to Toronto, then by Laparkan [a Guyanese-owned Shipping company] to Guyana.

Our most significant connection is with a Son of British Guiana and the Father of British Columbia, Sir James Douglas. We have been working to give prominence to his West Indian connections – his mother was from Barbados, his father was from Scotland. He was born in 1803 in Demerara, British Guiana [Guyana], South America; and the work he performed in the service of British Columbia and Canada.

His descendants participate in the Annual Douglas Day Celebrations at the birthplace of British Columbia, Historic Site Fort Langley. The 4th Annual Celebration was celebrated on Saturday, 21 November, 2009 @ 11:00 hours.

There is a duplicate of the statue of Sir James Douglas at the Historic Site, Fort Langley, which was made from the same mould, at his birthplace in Mahaica, East Coast Demerara, British Guiana (now Guyana).

In 2008, our Association assisted with the issue of Special Postage Stamps in Canada and Guyana commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the proclamation of British Columbia and the first Governor, James Douglas. The Guyana issues were released during Carifesta-X in August 2008.

Our goal is to expand the similarities between the histories of Guyana and British Columbia to include twinning of schools, enterprises, etc., for their mutual benefit

Contact information:

CLYDE DUNCAN, President – P.O.. Box 2869 Vancouver, B.C. V6B 3X4. Tel: 604-317-1771 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              604-317-1771      end_of_the_skype_highlighting Fax: 604-253-9275 E-Mail: clydeduncan@telus.net. Continue reading

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