Jose Maria Neve to honor 40 in region’s Cape Verde community
SWANSEA, Mass. — A gala dinner and cultural evening with Cape Verde Prime Minister José Maria Neves Saturday will honor 40 individuals and organizations significant to the local Cape Verdean community in the past 40 years.
The event from 6 p.m. to midnight at the Venus de Milo, Grand Army Highway, is also a fundraiser for Cape Verdeans who were sent to the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, an African island country near the equator, “in times of famine,” says Yvonne Smart, education coordinator at the Cape Verdean Museum Exhibit on Waterman Avenue in East Providence and one of the 40 being recognized.
“In times of famine in Cape Verde many Cape Verdeans were sent to these two islands, south of Cape Verde, as contract laborers and suffered great hardships,” Smart wrote in an email. Assistant Pastor Jose Delgado of Providence’s Mount Hope Community Baptist Church, also an honoree, “has been trying to help these folks for many years.”
Cape Verde, an island country off the northwest coast of Africa, celebrated its 40th year of independence in July. The prime minister, who met with Governor Raimondo Tuesday, is in America to address the opening session of the United Nations in New York. Smart says he is leaving office soon, so this is his farewell visit to the local Cape Verdean community.
Rhode Island has the nation’s largest Cape Verdean community when measured as a percentage of the total population, according to a 2013 survey by the U.S. Census Bureau. It counted 21,284 people of Cape Verdean ancestry, about 2 percent of the state’s population.
Others being honored include The Cape Verdean Progressive Center of East Providence; the Cape Verdean Subcommittee of the Rhode Island Heritage Commission for continuing the Cape Verdean Independence Day Festival at India Point in Providence; Luis Lopes, producer of Nobidade TV, of Providence; and Jose (Djosinho) Duarte of Pawtucket, a veteran entertainer.
The event is being organized by the Consulate General of Cabo Verde, in Quincy, Mass., and the Embassy of Cabo Verde in Washington, D.C. There will also be a showcase of local Cape Verdean artists, featuring Manu Lima and other performers.
Tickets are $50 per person, and being sold in the following Rhode Island locations: Liga Africa Music, 180 Mineral Springs Avenue, in Pawtucket and Cabo Verde na Top, 902 Main Street, in Pawtucket.
By Alisha A. Pina
Journal Staff Writer
—firstname.lastname@example.org?(401) 277-7465?On Twitter: @AlishaPina
reprinted from Projo.com