The Folk Research Centre (FRC) was established in 1973 as repository for cultural heritage, a vehicle for research, study, recording and promulgating Saint Lucia’s rich heritage. It houses an extensive library of publications, audio visual recordings and photographs and is the major study centre for work carried out into Saint Lucia’s folk culture by both nationals and visiting researchers and students.
The main objectives of the Folk Research Centre are:
- to promote research into Saint Lucia’s culture;
- to explore and clarify the role of culture in the development of our people;
- to contribute to the cultural development of our people
In addition to its research facilitation mandate, the FRC runs several programmes aimed at promoting folk practices and ensuring their succession. Among these are Kwéyòl language classes, school programmes for both primary and secondary aged children, Kwéyòl translation services, Kwéyòl orthography, folk art production and exhibitions.
In August 1999 the FRC was granted Development Agency Status and its headquarters at Mount Pleasant, Castries have been deemed a heritage site as an historical building.
The FRC’s primary thrust in public sensitisation and promotion of Creole culture culminates in October with Creole heritage month. Jounen Kwéyòl celebrated at the end of October, is a community based celebration of Creole food, music and folk traditions and is observed in conjunction with Journée internationale du Créole. Jounen Kwéyòl has grown since its inception in 1984 and has gained so much momentum as to become one of the most anticipated events on the national calendar.
The FRC is dedicated to the values of koudmen, the spirit of cooperation, and the responsible stewardship of Saint Lucia’s cultural heritage and resources, and as such is committed to cooperation with other local, regional and international bodies in its efforts to promote a global understanding of culture in development.