Elsie Altara Bernier the executive director of BFF has been hard at work on behalf of the People of Haiti. But as a Haitian-American living in Maplewood where there of Caribbean from a range of nations, Elsie saw the need to work on behalf of, and unify the voice of the Caribbean in SOMA. The Caribbean population South Orange and Maplewood is approximately 11% with 6.5% of Haitian origin. Elsie joined forces with Anselm a Trinidadian American who is the owner of Caribbean Sports International CSI, WZYE Radio station. Elsie and Anselm have joined their enterprises to create the USA Mission of BFF under the name of SOMA Caribbean with the purpose of unifying the voice of the Caribbean Community and of those of the US without regard to location, race, gender, sexual preference, culture, or religious belief. The USA Mission seeks to exhibit the Caribbean culture by connecting with local artists. Cultural Diversity of SOMA is an advantage that maximizes the ability to teach and learn from one another to build a better community.
The team has collaborated with many other members from the Caribbean including local Artists. The USA Mission seeks to build community support by networking with progressive Artist groups in the community and elsewhere that focus on giving a platform to the Artists. We strive to unite the community and the Nation through teaching and sharing the Caribbean culture through our local Artists. One of the Mission’s focus is to develop a program for the youth also to help the resident in the community to learn from their Caribbean neighbors so that they can create a bridge of trust, understanding and acceptance to better serve the community.
Elsie Altara Bernier Chair
Anselm Lebourne Vice-Chair
Desmond Figaro Secretary
Yvette Sterling Treasurer
Coobee Darcelin Director of Communication
President of FBF and Founder of SOMA Caribbean
Ian Grodman has been an attorney for twenty years. He was admitted to practice before the State and Federal Courts of New Jersey and New York, and has appeared in Immigration Court and District Offices of United States Citizenship and Immigration Servicers throughout both states. As an immigration attorney, Mr. Grodman has worked with offices of USCIS around the country, and with United States Consulates around the world.
As we strive to achieve a fair community for all, we must ensure that we don't overlook the challenges that other groups in the community are facing. If we are a community group our work shouldn't be limited to a certain group of people. If we want change in our country, and we're not making the effort to work harmoniously with other groups to bring that change for all the members in the community, that's hypocrisy. Real social justice leaders embrace and support everyone without regard to location, race, gender, sexual identification, culture, or religious belief.
That Summit was one of the best things that is happening in this community, It gives hope for better things to come. I thank each group that made the effort to participate, and a special thanks to Barbara Velasquez that helped to make the Summit possible.
Elsie Altara Bernier Founder and Executive Director of Fondasyon Bati Fanmy - Building Family Foundation. org and SOMA Caribbean.
SOMA Caribbean thank the Township of Maplewood for giving the most outstanding Haitian Flag Celebration. I personally thank Mayor Victor De Luca, the Deputy Mayor Frank McGehee, Committeeman Dean Dafisand Committeewoman Nancy Adams. With the most highest honor I thank you on behalf of the Haitian Community. You proved to us what a community should be like.
Because of you, today the Haitian Community have made a small imprint in the history of Maplewood.
SOMA Caribbean also thank the Ex-Mayor of Borough South Toms River, Makhandal Champagne for the most enlightenment speech on the history of the Haitian Flag. I thank you my brother. JOB WELL DONE! You represent our true Hero Makhandal and you deserve the name.
TOGETHER WE WILL WIN!
Small businesses are the engine of America’s economic prosperity.
SOMACA provides a platform to support locally owned Caribbean businesses and other businesses in the communities.
SOMACA is fully committed to building a bridge of trust to ensure residents are contributing to the economic growth of our towns by supporting local businesses including the Caribbean businesses. That bridge of trust will give Caribbean small business owners the opportunity to network with other businesses in the community and to attract buyers in the community and beyond in order to sustain and strengthen the local economy.
What do you want to see happen to improve small business revenue and to satisfy the community? Please send us your opinions and suggestions.
A day of Cultural entertainment with different dance performances. Food and music from the Latin Caribbean and the Caribbean Islands. Children workshops, crafts and face painting and activities for the whole family.
SOMA Caribbean will be holding a Caribbean Carnival on June 6, 2020 at the Memorial Park on Valley Street. We are looking for people to volunteer their time to run Caribbean related activities and the Children's Activities. Some activities may include Limbo Stick, Face painting, Kiddie, Paint n Sip Story telling, Children's dance whatever your imagination comes up with. Please email us at; firstname.lastname@example.org if you are willing to run such an activity!