BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. — The month of May is a celebration of Haitian heritage and culture for Haitians in the community.
“It’s been huge for us. It’s a sign of pride for all Haitians,” said Samuel Pierre, presdient of Palm Beach Haitian Heroes, Inc.
Boynton Beach residents are buying their Haitian flag wear ahead of the country’s flag day.
“Got to represent Haiti, everywhere we go,” said Carmalle Severe. “We are proud of our country.”
The excitement comes ahead of the city of Boynton Beach’s proclamation of Haitian Heritage Month and May 18 as Haitian Flag Day.
Pierre is accepting the proclamation during Tuesday’s city commission meeting.
“We want to say thank you for all of the municipalities choosing to honor us as a community.”
Pierre says Haitian Flag Day celebrates the Haitian rebellion in 1803 when Haitian slaves overthrew their French masters and created their own flag.
“So, there was that Congress of Arcahaie in Haiti, where they ripped off the white portion of the French flag, you know, blue, white and red,” said Pierre. “Then they made that red and blue, the Haitian flag, even before we declared our independence.”
For some of its community members having municipalities recognize their heritage is a welcoming gesture.
“It makes me feel included and valued,” said Marquette Angèle Daniel.
“We like to be seen as loving people and people who love their country,” said Jane Marcel. “People at the same time respect and enjoy being here, because this country is another mother land for us.”
In the city’s proclamation it states:
“To promote awareness and understanding of cultural diversity in our society in order to strengthen the self-esteem of our multicultural community.”
“We’re encouraging our fellow Haitians to continue to do their hard work,” said Pierre, “and everything wonderful that we’re doing, just to keep our flags higher and higher every single day.”