A digital way to honor the leaders.
In commemoration of June as Caribbean-American Heritage month, all of the city’s digital WiFi kiosks — LinkNYC, are displaying images of Caribbean-American icons all month. The project was created by Caribbeing, a Flatbush-based cultural center, in partnership with LinkNYC. The display intends to familiarize passersby with the influential people of West Indian background, and honor their contributions to American history, according to the project’s creator.
“We hope New Yorkers will learn more about the tremendous contributions of Caribbean Americans to New York City and beyond, National Caribbean American Heritage Month celebration, and about the work Caribbeing is doing to illuminate the Caribbean experience through culture + art + digital media technologies,” said executive director of Caribbeing, Shelley Worrell.
With Links rapidly popping up around many parts of the city, it is the perfect chance to highlight the notable and historic icons, among other day-to-day information, she added.
“The icons will appear on Links every minute or so, interspersed with other LinkNYC house content such as weather updates, and advertising content,” said Worrell.
The kiosks are currently highlighting 10 Caribbean-Americans, from writers, musicians, activists, actors, and dancers. They include Marcus Garvey, Celia Cruz, Harry Belafonte, DJ Kool Herc, Arturo Schomburg, Junot Diaz, Notorious B.I.G., Edwidge Danticat, Geoffrey Holder, and Claude McKay, according to Worrell. And more figures may be added to the billboards before the campaign is over.
Worrell says she pushed for a campaign to acknowledge the history of Caribbean people connected to the city’s history, after seeing other following the success of similar campaigns during black history month and women’s history month. With June being the month spotlighting Caribbean Heritage, it is the perfect time to honor that on a growing digital platform such as Links, she said.
“We are proud to be able to partner with LinkNYC to honor Caribbean American icons past and present,” said Worrell. “Despite the fact that the Caribbean is so close to the United States, few people are aware of the many American leaders, creators, and visionaries who happen to be of Caribbean descent.”