Saint lucia

Saint Lucia is a sovereign island country in the eastern Caribbean Sea on the boundary with the Atlantic Ocean. The island was created due to the volcanic activity and is about 43 km long and 23 km wide. The closest islands neighbouring St Lucia are ‘St Vincent’ to the south and ‘Martinique’ to the north. ‘Castries’ is the capital city of St Lucia, which is built on a reclaimed land mass, that is located in a flood gut region and is divided into eleven quarters. St Lucia was also known as the ‘Island of Iguanas’ as the Amerindian Arawak and Carib were known to be amongst the earliest settlers on the island. And St Lucia is also the current member of Commonwealth of Nations.

What are the demographics of St Lucia?

The population of St Lucia is evenly divided between the urban and the rural areas. One-third of the population of St Lucia resides in its capital city ‘Castries’. The island is ringed by number of settlements, many of which had their origins as fishing or plantations. Over the last decade, the population growth has slowed down due to the outward migration by the people for job opportunities. The area of most rapid growth over the years is ‘Gros-Islet’ region in the north as it is the centre of tourist development.

Which are the religions followed by the people of St Lucia?

The main religious group in St Lucia is the Roman Catholic community, accounting for over eighty-five percent of its population. Anglican, Baptist, Methodist, Pentecostal, Seventh Day Adventist, the Salvation Army are the various other Christian denominations that are followed and represented on the islands of St Lucia. An approximate of eighty-five percent of all St Lucians are Africans, with a lesser percentage of mixed African, British, French, East Indian and Carib.

How does the economy function in St Lucia?

Agricultural production has been export oriented since the ancient history. Over the years, the focus on commercial-export production has meant that agriculture for local consumption has suffered a lot. A lot of trading activities, largely in foodstuffs is done at the local level. The growth of industrial sector over the years is majorly in the field of export processing plants that produce garments, electronics assembly, paper products and leather goods. For these jobs local labour is employed on the basis of skill and education. Whereas the local small scale industries involve in food processing and craft production. These goods are available in the capital city market for the people as well as for the tourists. Over the years, tourism has taken over the banana production, as it is the most important revenue generator of foreign exchange. This helps in generating employment opportunities for about more than twelve thousand people.

How is the health care system in St Lucia?

St Lucia has a primary health care system for its people that include health care system throughout the island, each having a resident nurse and a weekly visit by the doctor. Hospitals are situated at ‘Vieux-Fort’ and ‘Castries’. Private medical health care facilities are available for the people who can afford it and is mostly located in the capital city ‘Castries’. Besides medical facilities, there are many who practice and believe in traditional therapies that include the use of locally grown plants and herbs which are combined in variety of tinctures, poultices and remedies. People believe that these therapies not only treat medical ailments but also spells, mental sickness or troubles of supernatural origin.

How is the education system in St Lucia?

In St Lucia, the Education Act provides for free and compulsory education for the children from the age group of five to fifteen. Schools here offer great education along with variety of extracurricular activities to the children. Education system is basically divided into four segments: Infant, primary, secondary and tertiary. ‘Charterhouse’ high school is among the famous schools of St Lucia. Colleges in St Lucia are meant for higher education, which comes after schooling. The colleges take care of the tertiary education of the students. Over the years, number of colleges in St Lucia has increased due to the inclusion of many different types of courses and institutions. The most popular colleges are ‘St. Leos College’ and  ‘Arthur Lewis Community college’.

Which are the unique animal and species found in St Lucia?

Though having a very less area, the Caribbean island of St Lucia is exceptionally rich in animals and plants. More than two hundred species are found here including the resident birds and reptiles. Its best-known species is the gorgeous but endangered ‘Amazon parrot’. The other species includes pencil cedar, staghorn coral and St Lucia Racer. ‘Leatherback’ turtles are found along the coastline.

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