The Seychelles Tourism Board is actively pursuing its strategy of targeting educational institutions, from nursery to university level, to create awareness of the destination among potential holidaymakers in the Middle East.
The Seychelles Tourism Board’s Tourism Attaché, based at the Seychelles Embassy in Abu Dhabi, Aliette Esther, recently took part in an International Cultural Day organised by the Ontario International Canadian School in Mirdiff, Dubai.
The event was held on the last day of the school term on March 22.
Each class had chosen to represent one particular country, and the Seychelles had the honour to be represented by the Senior Kindergarten A class, led by Miss Alithia D’Souza.
Erica Rangasamy, a Seychellois whose son goes to the school, assisted the STB representative to set up a beautifully-decorated booth with colourful posters of Seychelles islands depicting the dazzling powder-white beaches, clear blue seas, and the luxuriant UNESCO Heritage site of Vallée de Mai.
The multi-coloured Seychelles flag, served as a backdrop for photo shoots for each group of students that came by the stand.
The event was attended by 225 students, their parents, as well as 55 teachers and support staff. The guests were invited to visit the booths representing a myriad of countries such as France, Spain, Jordan, Egypt, India, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia to name but a few.
At the Seychelles stand, visitors were also able to indulge in some local snacks such as banana, cassava, breadfruit chips as well as coconut chunks accompanied by a refreshing drink of coconut water.
“The young Seychelles representatives could not get enough of these. Everyone was fascinated by the Seychelles sceneries, including the coco-de-mer and asked lots of questions about it,” said Ms Esther.
The highlight of the day was a cultural performance, where each class had to perform a dance from the country they were representing. The Senior Kindergarten A class, dressed in colourful orange, blue, red, green and purple attires performed the rhythmic séga dance, 'Met ou lanmen anler bouz bouz dan ou leren' while waving the Seychelles flag.
The dance moves were choreographed by Ms Esther, and the children received some encouragement from Seychellois couple, Erica and Billy Rangasamy, who joined them on the stage.
All children went away with a goodie bag containing Seychelles branded gifts.
Ms. Esther expressed her heartfelt gratitude to the Parents Teachers Association, the School’s Principal, Mr. Ron Hodkinson, the Seychelles Department of Culture, Miss Alithia D’Souza and her Senior Kindergarten A class, Billy and Erica Rangasamy and of course to all the kids, whose enthusiasm contributed to the success of the event.