What is so great about festivals anyway? For generations, festivals have represented an expressive way to celebrate heritage, culture, traditions and special moments in our lives and with loved ones. A festival is our connector.
Rebel Salute 2020 is celebrating its 27th anniversary. The festival fuses music, food, culture and heritage like no other music festival has delivered before.
At this years’ Rebel Salute, the Good News Jamaica team roved about seeking to capture the experience of the festival from the patrons, performers, concessionaires and other booth vendors perspective. Subsequently, one such unique experience happened with members of the National Council on Reparation, a unit established under the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport.
Some might speculate on the significance of their presence at this festival. However, our team sat with Mrs. Laleta Davis-Mattis, Chairman of the Council and Ms. Jo-Anne Archibald, Principal Director in the Ministry to talk about their participation at the event.
We came away understanding the significance of the Ministry’s participation as being one of duality. That is, the promotion of upcoming reggae month activities and to promote an awareness of the government of Jamaica’s reparations efforts.
Mrs. Davis-Mattis explained that the Unit will travel country-wide and engage outreach programmes to increase awareness of historical and current justification for reparation. She further explained that children at the primary level will not be excluded in the outreach efforts, as the Unit recognizes the benefits of sensitizing youths to recognize their ancestors and becoming knowledgeable of what their ancestors stood for and created.
The council’s work programme includes public meetings, presentations in the media, the showing of films and maintaining an interactive website.
Salute the Mission
Given these points, our team spoke with the “Rebel” himself about the mission of the festival and its strategic alignments. Its important to realize, Rebel Salute is a school with emphasis on ancestral culture. Therefore, patrons were introduced to topics to get them thinking about what needs to be real. Mr. Barrett was pleased to share that the strategic mission of the partnership is to, “Teach people who never learn, remind those who forget, and strengthen those who are weak (physically and mentally), and to even resurrect those from the dead”. In speaking about the ‘movement of Jah people’, he emphasized the steps that people must take to fulfill their desire.
What has been great about Rebel Salute 2020 festival? It celebrates Jamaican roots music, it celebrates our heritage and it celebrates our culture. Mission Accomplished!