Born on the Island of Curacao and the second of four siblings. I was called Lucette Kwidama, a French first name with an African last-name. But I’m not French or African. As you know more than 300 years ago a great amount of African people were shipped to the West to work as slaves. African people were scattered in different places even in Curacao. That’s the reason why I’m part of the African Diaspora!
Curacao is located in the Caribbean Sea. North West of South America and the closest Country is Venezuela. Curacao was conquered by various countries like Spain, Netherlands, England and France to name a few. That’s why our Native language is Afro-Portuguese. But because of the influence of different countries we are using in our Afro-Portuguese language called Papiamentu different foreign words. The African country of Cape Verde speaks almost the same like our Papiamentu!
The Natives from Venezuela were the first inhabitants of our Island and lived here since about 2500 years BC.Curacao is only 444 square kilometers and I live in the biggest and most populated area of our Island. The population is about 154000 thousand people. Curacao became since 2010 together with Aruba, Dutch St Maarten and the Netherlands part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Since 1954 until 2010 the Islands were the Netherlands Antilles consisting of six Islands and then 5. The three smallest Island became since 2010 semi-municipalitiesof the Netherlands. Aruba was already a country in the Kingdom for more than 20 years. The Netherlands Antilles stopped to exist since October 10th, 2010. Before 1954, Curacao was a colony of the Spain and then the Netherlands! I am a Dutch citizen and a resident of the Island of Curacao, Dutch Caribbean!
I'm the mother of two, a Son of 20 and a daughter of 15 years of age. My son just left to study Music and Production in the Netherlands. He love to make Music because for him that’s the way to deal with everything he had to go through as a very young boy. It was for me a big challenge to see him go, but thank God it went smooth. Social media was and is the key!
I'm a survivor of Domestic Violence and with domestic I don't mean only home but also country. My former husband was very abusive especially verbal. He also was a high government official and abuse was at the level of his position. I had a business and I became entangled in a situation that until the day of today there is still some pieces of the puzzle missing. But my God will never leave any stone unturned if the purpose is for everything to come to light. Before the government got his chance in our lives, my marriage was already wounded. You can never stand or be strong as a person or family when there is division.
Former husband choose the side of the government and marriage was over. I was alone, weak and broken. I became the star of the media, every day and I mean every day I was in the newspaper and on the radio, with something to damage my reputation. Despite of everything I have all reasons to thank God for life…!
Divorce was filed, verbal abuse increased, media abuse increased, lies by ex-husband that my daughter was raped by my nephew came into picture. My nephew was at that moment in time 16 years of age. It was difficult for him to deal with this horrible lie. At age 21 he became sick, and died at age 21! It was too much for him to bear. He was like a son for me, he was a sweet young men that I loved as a son. It’s already six years that he left us.
Because of the false rape case I had to visit a psychologist that was appointed by the justice department with my daughter. When we reached police officers were waiting for my 4 years old daughter so she can help them with a lie that she was raped. The amount of police officers at the location was not normal. 4 years old and she had to deal with a psychologist and police officers alone. I was not allowed to be with her, until it did not work out for the justice system. They had to call me inside because they needed a helping hand. I had to leave my son alone. But, how a little child playing with a doll and cooking will let you see something that never happened???????? It was a big dirty and messy game…!
My difficulty now is,……….Where do I start!
Domestic Violence is a big issue here in Curacao. Many homes are a battlefields every moment of the day. And, it’s not easy to get support of the government here on the Island, It’s not only a women thing but also, children, men, and the elderly. Here are some figures:
2014: 987 new cases of Domestic Violence, 90 more then 2013! An Average of 82 cases per month. August & October were the busiest months: 90 & 104 Cases. Oldest client was age 92 Youngest client age 6. Between ages 71 -75 : 75 cases/ Between ages 86 – 90: 27/ Victims of robbery in 2014: 402/ Rape cases in 2014: 12/Abused male: 337
The hunger that I have is to give a helping hand to the abused community. The need is is great. But It’s is too big to deal with it alone. I will be in contact with a professional that is fighting every day for this cause. She is the one who started an organization called “Victim Support Foundation”. Today a very important organization in Curacao for the abused. These figures are registered, there are many we do not know about.
Working, Helping and speaking about Domestic Violence or Gender based Violence and also other life issues is my passion. I need support of the world community, I have World Pulse!
My time to start is yesterday…!
Where hope would otherwise become hopelessness, it becomes faith. ~Robert Brault,