A Caribbean-American community leader called on West Indians living in the United States to establish a Caribbean Diaspora brand.
Following the success of the 48th West Indian American Labor Day Carnival Parade, Kwayera Archer Cunningham asserted it was time build on brand Caribbean, starting in Brooklyn, which she called "Caribbean Central" in the United States.
"Yes, I am Jamaican, but when in New York City, I am a Jamaican from the Caribbean - the brand that many of our parents who came to this country helped to build," she said.
Archer Cunningham, an award-winning nonprofit executive who espouses the strengthening of communities by building sustainable philanthropic networks to ensure resources are directed to those most in need, suggested a powerful Diaspora brand might awaken Corporate America.
"We have contributed so much creative and intellectual power to the success of the United States," she says, "and we have infinite potential to do great things - both locally and globally."
She suggested Caribbean institutions and businesses collectively contribute to the community and to the Caribbean by pooling their significant resources.
Archer Cunningham, who has lived in Brooklyn for 27 years, believes the community needs to address the violence taking place during and beyond the Carnival season.
"The inter-generational experience I enjoyed while growing up in a Caribbean family and community was priceless," she said. "It's where young people learn how to socialize. We didn't go to baby sitters, we watched our parents dance, drink, eat and laugh. So we in turn, learned how to drink without fighting and don't drink until we pass out."