The Inter Agency Group of Development Organisations (IAGDO) and its member agencies extend condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of the late Christine Brathwaite of L’anse aux Épines.
Christine Brathwaite was of Grenadian parentage, born in Britain to a Grenadian father and a British mother. She came to Grenada at the age of 16. She took a keen interest in its development and was an active participant, initiating and/or lending her support to various interventions and actions. She was an advocate for the improved welfare and status of children, serving on many related committees and organisations dedicated to this cause. Those of us who had the good fortune to be acquainted with and/or engage with Brathwaite, will remember her passionate advocacy in support of improved child welfare and status in Grenada:
- the abolition of corporal punishment (which she described as child abuse) in schools; the abolition of “licks” as a disciplinary measure in schools has come to pass
- Grenada’s signing on to, and becoming a party to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. This convention would be a significant guide to its policies and actions to support improved welfare and the status of children. Children too, like adults, would have rights that were to be respected and protected
- the establishment of the Grenada National Coalition on the Rights of the Child, comprised of government and civil society stakeholders
As a member of The Group of Concerned Women, Brathwaite was also a passionate advocate for the protection of women and girls from violence. This group, formed in the wake of a number of incidents of rape in certain well-to-do areas of South St George, was intended to bring attention to the issue and to advocate for the protection of women and girls.
Brathwaite was a keen environmentalist and one of the founding members of Friends of the Earth-Grenada in 1991, serving a stint as its Treasurer. One of her most remembered campaigns, along with President Joseph Antoine and other members of Friends of the Earth, was the protection of Grenada’s endemic and endangered bird, the Grenada Dove, its declaration as Grenada’s National Bird, and the conservation of its habitat.
Brathwaite’s earthly journey has come to an end. We offer thanks for her various contributions to our nation’s development and in particular, to its children, women and the environment. May she rest in peace.
Sandra C A Ferguson