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Americas

Within the Americas region, there are 13 Commonwealth countries and the RCS currently has a presence in 7 of these. We have 13 independent branches within Canada, which is the most populated of these member states.

The Commonwealth members in this region are made up of Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago. Within this incredibly diverse region there is the world’s largest territory, Canada, and Guyana, which has some of the world's best conserved tropical forests.

Regional Youth Co-ordinator, Fawzi Ghosn

Fawzi is a Political Science and Human Rights graduate from Carleton University. Over the years, he has been actively involved in promoting the Commonwealth and its values within Canadian Society. Fawzi currently holds a Director position with the RCS Ottawa branch. He is a former delegate turned Co-chair of the Canadian National Student Commonwealth Forum (2010). 

Fawzi RC AmericasIn 2012, Fawzi co-founded MYCommonwealth (MYC), a national youth run and led organization representing Canadians aged 15-29 in the Commonwealth. As an active participant in the Commonwealth system of national youth representation, MYC advocates for the interests of youth, paying special attention to leadership, democracy and involvement in decision making.
 
Fawzi is an alumnus of the RCS Leadership Programme, NKABOM, which took place in Kigali, Rwanda in 2010. He has also had the opportunity to represent Canadians in 2011 at CYF 8 in Perth, Western Australia, helping craft a communiqué, circulated at CHOGM. 
 

Regional Co-ordinator, Ato Augustine

Ato Augustine holds a first degree in Human Resource Management and a certificate in Advance Counselling. He has extensive youth development and leadership experience, gained within Trinidad and Tobago but also at a Commonwealth level.

Ato has served on the Executive Member of the Trinidad Youth Council and with other national, community and youth organisations. He has a good understanding of the Commonwealth, gained during his tenure as Commonwealth Youth Ambassador and member of the Pan-Commonwealth Youth Caucus (Commonwealth Youth Programme). He has also served on many international steering and planning groups, including for the Commonwealth Youth Forum (Trinidad and Tobago, 2009 and Perth, Australia, 2011). He  brings extensive networks and contacts within the Caribbean and Commonwealth-wide.

Ato was award two national youth awards, one in 2002 for his contribution to community development and the other in 2009 for youth in leadership.  

Ato1
Regional Co-ordinators

Contact Ato Augustine (left) and Fawzi Ghosn (above)

email: ato.augustine@thercs.org and fawzi.ghosn@thercs.org

What's happening in this region?

 Barbados NZ ReceptionRESIZED14 March 2017: RCS Barbados branch held a reception at the residence of the New Zealand High Commissioner, in celebration of the Commonwealth, in the presence of (pictured l-r) Mr. David Henderson (husband of the NZ High Commissioner), Her Excellency Mrs. Jan Henderson NZ High Commissioner, Sir Anand Satyanand, immediate past Chairman of the Commonwealth Foundation and former Governor of New Zealand,  Mrs. Cheryll Belle Chairman of The Royal Commonwealth Society Barbados Branch and Mrs Lady Satyanand. 

This followed the annual multi-faith Observance for Commonwealth Day, held in Bridgetown in the presence of His Excellency Sir Elliott Belgrave, GCMG, KA, Governor General of Barbados.

 DomRep MG 2871RESIZED14 March 2017: The Roundtable of Commonwealth Countries in the Dominican Republic gathered diplomats from nations accredited in the Dominican Republic, including presidents of the bi-national chambers of Britain, Canada, Trinidad and India, to mark Commonwealth Day. Matthew Webb, Gt. Britain, read the Commonwealth Day message from HM The Queen; Roundtable President, Fernando González Nicolás, delivered the keynote speech saying that recent trading figures placed Commonwealth countries as the Dominican Republic’s third biggest trading partner, after the United States and Haiti.

 TorontoAnnualGeneral Meeting Arts and Letter Club 2016 50CROP RESIZE2016: RCS Toronto branch held a fundraiser in aid of the Sri Lankan charity Mencafep, which supports people with disabilities. Pictured: Sri Lanka Branch Chair, Shiva Yogendrenathen receives the donation on behalf of Mecafep from RCS Toronto Branch Chair Andrew McMurty at the Arts & Letters Club, Toronto, Canada.

 

 

Nova Scotia student group15 October 2016: The Nova Scotia branch of the RCS engaged with local students on a scenic bus tour of the South Shore of Nova Scotia, organised by branch member, Stephen Cooper. They were met by the President, Heather MacKinnon in Chester.

 

 

Barbados4resizedCommonwealth Day 2016: RCS Barbados Branch of The held its Annual Multi-Faith Observance for Commonwealth Day at the James Street Methodist Church in Bridgetown.

The Observance, which was conducted by Rev. Tanya Conliffe, the Methodist Chaplain of the Cave Hill Campus of The University of the West Indies assisted by Dean Emeritus, The Very Reverend Dr. Frank Marshall, CBE, featured a meditation by Rev. Dr. Michael Clarke, the Principal of Codrington College, Readings by the Baha'i, Muslim, Jewish, Christian, Buddhist and Muslim faiths, the latter read by Pandit Thakoor Prashad, the reading of Her Majesty's Commonwealth Day Message by the Governor-General of Barbados, His Excellency Sir Elliott Belgrave, GCMG, KA and the singing of anthem 'Come, See' by the choir of The Coleridge & Parry School.

VancouverIsland Mrs Margaret McDougallCROP9 September 2015: Vancouver Branch - Mrs Margaret McDougall celebrated her 100th birthday in style  - Celebrating HM The Queen becoming the longest reigning British monarch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manitoba3CROPJune 2015: Manitoba Branch At a reception at the Legislature, Manitoba's Lt. Governor, Her Honor Janice Filmon, and Premier, Greg Salinger, unveiled a coin issued by the Royal Canadian Mint (in Winnipeg) on the occasion of the Queen becoming Britain's longest reigning Monarch. The picture shows the unveiling of the coin; fitting refreshments of 'cream teas' were served!

 

 

 

 



Across the Americas region, 13 Queens Young Leaders have been announced - see the list

IMG 0006 VancouverApril 2015: Vancouver Island Branch held a Baby Shower to welcome the new royal baby expected by Their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. However, the gifts of brushed cotton ‘receiving blankets’ were for newborns in Vanuatu, one of the most urgent requirements for babies as the islands come to terms with the loss of homes and hospitals in the worst typhoon ever experienced in the South Pacific. Pictured arriving with their blankets are two of Vancouver Island branch’s most faithful members, Mrs Marion Adams, 94 (left) and Mrs Margaret McDougall, 99. Also attending the meeting was Dr Unger of Victoria, who had recently returned from Vanuatu.

RCS MFO 4 Choir sings CROPCommonwealth Day 2015: Barbados Branch hosted its Annual Multi-Faith Observance at St. Leonard's Church, Bridgetown, in commemoration of Commonwealth Day and in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Branch. His Excellency Sir Elliott Belgrave, GCMG, KA, Governor-General of Barbados and Patron of the Branch read Her Majesty's Commonwealth Day Message.  In keeping with the theme 'A Young Commonwealth', Barbados National Youth Parliament representative Miss Saskia Singh and CARICOM Youth Ambassador Mr. Mosiah Hoyte delivered addresses to the audience of nearly 500. Pictured is the choir of the Grantley Prescod Memorial School singing "Chatter with the Angels"  

Vancouver IslandIMG 0042Commonwealth Day 2015: Vancouver Island Branch was celebrated at Government House of British Columbia, hosted by Lieutenant Governor, the Honourable Judith Guichon OC. Pictured from left: Robert Rathbun (Society of Officers of the Honourable Guard); Jeneece Edroff, nominee and runner up of the QYLA; Wendy Halliday (President of the Vancouver Island Branch); Pamela Hobbs (Wartime technician of Bletchley Park); Christopher Stanbury (also an Officer of the Honourable Guard) and David Wynne, visiting VI branch member visiting from Singapore. The Honour Guard welcomed visitors at the Porte Cochere of Government House with swords drawn overhead. The luncheon was opened with a procession led by a piper.

Embajador Fisher Priscilla Comer Fernando Gonzalez y Roberto Herrera entre otrosCommonwealth Day 2015: Santo Domingo. The Roundtable of Commonwealth Countries in the Dominican Republic, in partnership with the British Embassy hosted a celebration at the New Horizons Bilingual School. British Ambassador, Steven Fisher, read the message from HM The Queen and Head of the Commonwealth and noted that this year's theme was 'A Young Commonwealth' while Commonwealth Roundtable President, Fernando Gonzalez Nicolas, stressed the Commonwealth’s political, social and economic importance for Dominicans.

The Commonwealth Round Table is an organization that promotes bilateral relations between Dominican Republic and the 53 member countries around the world.

JamaicaCommonwealth Day 2015: RCS Jamaica joined 52 other nations on March 9 with a celebration hosted by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, at King’s House.The event, under the theme: ‘A Young Commonwealth’ was organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society, Jamaica Branch, and featured the reading of the Commonwealth message from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II by the Governor-General, who also raised a toast to the Queen (pictured).

WinnipegCommonwealth Day 2015: Winnipeg Branch His Honour Philip Lee and Her Honour Anita Lee, Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba, with Murray Burt, President of the Royal Commonwealth Society, Manitoba Branch.

 

 

 

DSC01405November 2014: Over the past 25 years the Nova Scotia Branch of the Royal Commonwealth Society has been taking Commonwealth Students on a sight-seeing tour of Lunenburg, NS. Pictured here, the latest group taking a short break in the historic village of Chester, NS.

 

 

 

Toronto RCS event Picture21 October 2014: Toronto Branch presented Commonwealth Speaker Series & Annual AGM on the topic of Commonwealth Legacy - The Westminster Parliamentary System. All are welcome to attend this event featuring special guest speaker and Commonwealth Parliamentary Expert Professor Peter H. Russell, O.C. Click here for more information. 

 

Commonwealth Games Canada logo website24 September 2014: RCS Ottawa presented Brian MacPherson, Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Games Canada, and Sultana Frizell, Gold Medalist Commonwealth Games, at The Naval Officers’ Mess, 78 Lisgar St, Ottawa, Ontario. 

The Commonwealth Games are of major importance to the Commonwealth of Nations and to Canada. Hear from two of Canada's leaders about the Commonwealth Games. Please click here for more information.

September: RCS Branch, Vancouver Island presented local writer and sports commentator, Cleve Dheensaw, who gave a extensive report on the Commonwealth Games. In more than 3 decades of writing about Island athletes, Cleve has covered both the 1996 Atlanta, and 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. He has covered 5 Commonwealth Games, from Auckland in 1990, to the recently concluded 2014 Games in Glasgow, Scotland. He is also the author of 5 books about the Summer Olympics, Commonwealth Games, B.C. Lacrosse, and the history of sport on Vancouver Island. His latest book is about  Simon Whitfield.

NSCF May14May 2014, RCS Ottowa 80 high school students and 30 Planning team members from across Canada will come together in the nations capital for the RCS Ottawa's National Student Commonwealth Forum (NSCF). In it's 42nd year, NSCF provides delegates with an opportunity of a life time to debate in Canada's Senate, meet with High Commissioners, hold a model CHOGM, learn about the Commonwealth and its values, and create lasting friendships. Further information is available at NSCF

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