Ahead of Amerindian Heritage Month, annually observed in September, the Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry has published a request for proposals to be submitted for activities for the month-long celebration, as well as a theme.According to the Ministry’s Communications Officer, Alethea Grant, the proposals must be sent in before May 27. She noted the importance of the public’s participation in proposing not only the activities for the celebrations, but the theme as well.Grant told Guyana Times, “We are meeting as a committee and we are still in planning mode. We hope to get new and vibrant ideas for this year’s Heritage celebrations.”The outstanding proposals submitted will be featured in this year’s Heritage activities. The call for proposals is nothing new to this Ministry since Grant said it usually did this every year.Persons seeking to submit their proposals can do so by clearly labelling their packages “Heritage 2018” before dropping them off at the Ministry’s 251-252 Thomas and Quamina Streets, Georgetown office.The Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry launched the annual Heritage Festival at the Umana Yana, in Georgetown last year, under the theme “Guyana’s first peoples; sustaining a rich cultural environment”. The launch was done in the spirit of International Day of World Indigenous Peoples.It saw the participation of all six ethnic groups at its many activities.Amerindian Heritage Month grew out of the commemoration of the day Stephen Campbell became Guyana’s first Amerindian Member of Parliament on September 10, 1957. On September 10, 1995, then President Cheddi Jagan officially designated September Amerindian Heritage Month.The official opening of Amerindian Heritage Month celebrations usually takes place at the Umana Yana on the first day of September. Every year a Heritage Village is selected, which becomes the focus of festivities.