The Culture Division focuses on the development of Trinidad and Tobago’s many artistic forms. We partner with and give support to the work of cultural organizations, community groups, arts based NGOs and artists and cultural workers. We also take the lead on Policy development and implementation for the culture sector.
Before 1981 the Culture portfolio of Trinidad and Tobago was shared between the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Culture Unit of the Division of Community Development, the National Cultural Council and the Best Village Unit. The National Cultural Council was a small group of outstanding artists who served as an Advisory Body to the Government. Throughout its existence, until 1981, Mr. Andrew Carr, Ms. Marjorie Padmore and Dr. J. D. Elder, each served as Chair of the Council.
The Culture Division grew out of a combination of the Culture Division, Ministry of Education and Culture, and the Cultural Unit of the Community Development Division; it was first located in the Ministry of Community Development and Culture. In the early stages it functioned mainly in the areas of Research and Training in various community-based arts. During the second half of the 1980’s, the focus shifted from its original function to one of Arts and Culture Management.
The Culture Division operated as an agency of Government that was charged with the responsibility of facilitating, promoting and preserving the culture of Trinidad and Tobago. This responsibility ensured that citizens continued to develop to the extent that, regardless of their innate differences, they will possess the qualities necessary to enable them to be empowered and live in dignity. The Culture portfolio has been attached to a
number of Ministries in the post independence era. These included:
The current line ministry of the Culture Division is The Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts.