National Institute of Culture and History

A little bit of History, The Garifuna’s!

Happy Garifuna Settlement Day!! 

The most important day in the Garifuna calender is November 19. On this day, Garifuna Settlement Day, the arrival of the first Garinagu to Belize by dory  (dug-out canoe) is celebrated in all Garifuna communities in the country.

Settlement Day is celebrated for a whole week including parades, live music, drumming, dancing, prayers, Garifuna mass and election of Miss Garifuna take place to mark the anniversary. In communities like Dangriga and Punta Gorda, a dory symbolizing the arrival of the first Garinagu, is floating to shore around early morning dawn while local Garinagu women dress in their colorful costumes – , tourists and other interested await the arrival onshore.

Since 1943 November 19th has been a public holiday in the Stan Creek and Toledo districts called Garifuna Settlement Day. From 1977 November 19th has been a county wide public holiday.



The San Ignacio & Santa Elena  House of Culture invites all  artists residing in the Cayo district to participate in the Cayo Art Collection Exhibit 2012. The exhibition will  be open on 19th October 2012, and it will run through to November 15th, at the San Ignacio & Santa Elena House of Culture.

This exhibit is open to all artists with Original Art work, preferably those residing in the Cayo District. It will comprise of all forms of art, including drawing, sculpture, photography, graphics, ceramics, etc. All arts should have a maximum height or weight of  42 inches, and two pieces may be entered.

Interested artists must register before 10th of October 2012, at the San Ignacio & Santa Elena House of Culture.  For additional information, contact the San Ignacio & Santa Elena House of Culture via telephone: 824-0783, or email: sisehoc

Click here for a copy of the flyer.


As a continuation to the Artists in Development Program the National Institute of Culture and History through the Institute of Creative Arts (ICA) is partnering with the Music Industry of Belize and the Belize Chamber of Commerce to create a space at the 2012 Expo, where they will allow Belizean Artists to showcase their works of art and connect with the community.

In order for this to be a success ICA is looking for artists, cultural workers and associations, to showcase their creative designs, products and services at the ICA Creative Village.

Interested Applicants Must:

  • Fall into either the Jewelry, fashion design, visual art, music, record label/ studios,  or creative associations.
  • Have at least one reference of authenticity in regards to their works, or have a registered creative business or be member of a registered art association.

A registration fee of $60.00 is charged, and it will provide artists with a 10*10 booth space, 1 table, 2 chairs, lunch for both days and 1 mannequin (if needed).

Submission of Application Form

Interested participants must complete an application form, which can be found in the link at the bottom of the page. Along with the form, they are required to:

  1.  Include a portfolio including pictures or sketches of the pieces that will be exhibited.
  2. Include Business Cards or brochures with contact information.
  3. Have an assistant who will be responsible for the bookings of orders, as well as answer any questions about the products.
  4. Fashion designers will also be responsible to submit 1 model of their choice along with their measurements.

Click here for the application form.

Need More Information, feel free to click here.

National Cultural Policy Consultation July- August 2012

The National Institute of Culture and History hereby informs the general public that countrywide consultations will be carried out during July and August 2012 to develop a National Cultural Policy.

The consultations are designed to identify the linkages between culture and development and to discuss economic, social, and cultural factors which should be considered in the decision- making process at the national level.

The end goal is to develop a better understanding of Belizean culture; encourage social participation; develop positive cultural attitudes; and introduce a policy which reflects the desire of Belizeans for the development of culture and arts.

Click here for Press Release.

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