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Coconut Telefax March 11, 2019

Coconut Telefax logo - Rona Coster Aruba

9th Annual Women’s Conference

The Renaissance Convention Center hosted the 9th Annual Women’s Conference on March 8, 2019, on International Women’s Day. Themed “Achieving Balance,” it was organized by the government of Aruba.

A number of great achievements were noted that day:

53% of Aruba’s population is female vs. 47% male.

At the University of Aruba, of the 474 enrolled students, more than 60% are females.

52.1% of the island’s work force is female.

97.7% of all women living here are literate.

75% of the island’s teachers are females.

43.3% of all managerial positions are held by females, including the prime minister and the minister of finance, economic affairs & culture; the head of the Central Bank; the CEOs of the Pension Funds; the CEO of the Aruba Tourism Authority; the CEO of the Aruba Hotel & Tourism Association; and the chief innovation officer the government.

33% of parliament is female, 25% of ministers are female, and 73% of the Ministry of Finance, Economic Affairs & Culture is female, according to Minister Xiomara Ruiz-Maduro.

96% of females have daily access to the internet.

79.6% of females own a smart phone.

There are 26,414 females employed in Aruba vs. 25,803 men. There were 3,375 females in the work force in 1960.

The interesting morning included presentations and a panel discussion, and demonstrated that women in our community lead, enjoying a wealth of personal and communal opportunities.


ECO Destination Management Services Wins SITE’s Prestigious Crystal Award

Wichita Villacres, president and CEO of ECO Destination Management Services, and Maoreen Every, ECO’s managing director & COO, along with their dynamic team, have recently landed one of the industry’s most prestigious recognitions, the SITE Crystal Award, the highest honor in the incentive travel industry.

The SITE Crystal Award recognizes creative, practical, and truly memorable incentive programs that keep employees engaged and drive business. Winners represent excellence in their profession and offer an example of inspirational experiences and business results.

ECO DMS outshone all the other international competitors with its intense yearlong program of activities, conceived and executed to perfection during the company’s 30th anniversary celebration, which acknowledged and celebrated the company’s three circles of engagement: the island community, local and international clients, and loyal employees.

Looking back, Villacres stated that it was a most rewarding year culminating with a four-day invitational event, including all the company’s international partners toasting to 30 years of successful collaboration, as well as the passing of the baton from Villacres to her daughter Maoreen, who is now establishing herself as the charismatic leader of the company.

“The feedback we got,” Villacres added, “was that no other DMC has ever undertaken a program of that scope and magnitude, as it was a yearlong effort.”

About SITE: The Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE) is the only business events association dedicated exclusively to the global incentive travel industry. Founded in 1973 by professionals, the association consists of 2,500 members located in 90 countries, working in corporations, agencies, airlines, cruise companies, and across the entire destination supply chain.

About ECO DMC: ECO is a Dutch Caribbean full-service destination management company. It operates in both Aruba and Curacao, with a sales office in Florida. The company combines creativity, personal service, and superior professional skills to deliver memorable motivational experiences to clients from around the globe.


Aruba’s National Coat of Arms, in Preparation for March 18

Aruba will be celebrating its national day under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and the Department of Culture of Aruba on March 18, 2019. Both government departments have set the education of our locals and our guests as one of their priorities.

Aruba is proud of its six national icons, including the coat of arms, the national anthem, the flag, our native Papiamento language, our currency, and the shoco, the indigenous owl that symbolizes the country.

Our Coat of Arms: The creative search for one was announced on March 27, 1953, as a contest. A Dutchman from Amsterdam, Atelier voor Heraldische Kunsten, was finally assigned the task of creating a basic design concept.

On November 15, 1955, the Government of the Insular Territory of Aruba—what we called the local government then, prior to the introduction of the island’s special independent status within the kingdom of the Netherlands—officially approved it.

The coat of arms includes the Aloë plant, a source of income and industry here, as well as the Hooiberg, signifying that the island has risen from the sea. The green color represents happiness and a sense of satisfaction about the island’s self-determination, and the waves represent the ocean that surrounds us.

The clutched hands represent friendly ties with other nations, politically, economically, and culturally. The color red is that of generosity, and it means we are prepared to work to reinforce these important ties.

The helm symbolizes a rudder guiding our industry, which is the most important source of income for the island. The cross in the middle of the coat of arms stands for devotion and faith. The red lion on top stands for force and abundance. The laurel leaves represent peace and friendship.