During an evening of elegance and appreciation the Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs saluted and celebrated the achievements of 20 Nevisian women for their entrepreneurial service the past five years , some working in nontraditional occupations.

The ceremony and cocktail reception was held at the Nevis Performing Arts Center. The awards were part of the International Women’s Day Celebration.

The Premier Hon Mark Brantley in some brief remarks said the “very special women” being honored have contributed to the island very substantially

“I am very proud that we can have an event like this. An event where we can celebrate our women who have contributed and have continued to contribute.”

The 20 women awarded were Margaret Percival, Hope Merchant, Myrthlyn Claxton, Judith Liburd, Hyacinth Hendrickson, Sherry Gajor, Patricia Dasent, S. Patricia Claxton, the late Dolpher Hobson, Dian Hanley, Yvonne Farrell, Paulette Fredericks, Claudette Walwyn, Esmie Parris, Mignon Wade and Kastra Cornelius for women in business for over five years and Ulita Lucius, Dawn Kelly and Tara Huggins for women in non-traditional occupations.

Junior minister of Health and Gender Affairs Hon. Hazel Brandy-Williams, who delivered remarks at the ceremony, said that several of the awardees have crafted their own unique establishment which has become fixtures on the socio-economic landscape of Nevis.

“This is significant because quite often when we think of economic development we consider the large luxurious hotels like the Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton’s and those nice establishments. We also look at the Horsfords and the TDCs and while these land mark ventures are critical to our nations development, it is numerous small to medium size business which hold the back bone of our economy. Consequently their success is our success and their efforts must therefore be applauded and should not be allowed to go unnoticed,” Brandy Williams said.

In continuing she noted that women in nontraditional occupation have been able to scale the contours of possibility even when there were persons said that their dreams and desires were impossible and even laughable.

“Indeed when others tried to hinder you with negative stereo type by suggesting that this job is only for men you demonstrated to them that women are equally capable of doing the things that they said only men could do. When other said women can’t, you exhibited courage and you responded yes we as women can.”