Culture prize recipient Marcella Gibbs-Marsdin (second left), with from left: Secretary of the Prince Bernhard Culture Fund in the Netherlands Thijs Tromp, chairperson of the Prince Bernhard Fund Caribbean Region Michèle Russel-Capriles, and local representative Jessica Berkel.
ST. EUSTATIUS–Every two years the Board of the Prince Bernhard Culture Fund Caribbean Region PBCCG awards a prize on each of the six Dutch Caribbean islands in recognition of outstanding efforts in the fields of art, culture and nature. This year, the Fund chose to award Marcella Gibbs-Marsdin with the 2017 PBCCG Prize on St. Eustatius, after consideration of several submittals from the community.
PBCCG Chairperson Michèle Russel-Capriles, accompanied by board secretary of the Fund in the Netherlands Thijs Tromp, travelled to Statia to bestow the honour on Gibbs-Marsdin for her dedication to keeping cultural traditions alive.
Throughout her working years Gibbs-Marsdin always went beyond the call of duty to ensure that Statia traditions such as steelpan, Christmas carolling and July Tree branches remained alive and vibrant. She not only organizes various events yearly, she actively participates and engages the community to uphold these tradition, norms and values.
It is this dedication to preserving traditions and encouraging the community to do the same that has earned Gibbs-Marsdin the 2017 PBCCG Prize.
The prize was awarded in the presence of Acting Island Governor Julian Woodley, Commissioners Derrick Simmons and Charles Woodley, Gibbs-Marsdin’s family and close friends, and representatives of organizations the Culture Fund supports in Statia.
The board of the PBCCG sees in Gibbs-Marsdin a role model for the young people of Statia. “She is the embodiment of energy, tradition and the spirit of giving,” according to the Prince Bernhard Fund.