Raena LeBourne was born and raised in New Jersey where she grew her passions for music, swimming, performing, traveling, medicine and so much more. Born into a passionate Trinidadian family, Raena was always encouraged to chase after her dreams and work hard at whatever she put her mind too. This created a multitalented young advocate who couldn't pick just one hobby, this trait played out throughout her life. Her last year at Colgate University, where she was majoring in Neuroscience and Spanish, and pursuing medical school, she decided to completely uproot her path and make her own. Today, she is engulfing herself in different areas of life that she loves and holds meaning to her. She works for a neuroscience company, bringing health and wellness to people in need while also working on her own brand through multiple social media platforms. Encouraging young people like herself to believe in themselves, and pursue the things that invigorate them.
THE NATIONAL FLAG OF TRINIDAD & TOBAGO
The flag of Trinidad and Tobago was adopted upon independence from the United Kingdom on 31 August 1962. Designed by Carlisle Chang, the flag of Trinidad and Tobago was chosen by the independence committee of 1962. Red, black and white symbolize fire, earth and water..
THE COAT OF ARMS
The Coat of Arms of Trinidad & Tobago was designed by a
committee (formed in 1962 and including noted artist Carlisle
Chang and the late designer George Bailey) to select the symbols
that would be representative of the people of Trinidad & Tobago.
The shield has the same colors (black, red, and white) of the
nation's flag and carry the same meaning. The gold ships represent
the Santa Maria, Nina, and Pinta: the 3 ships Christopher Columbus
used on his journey to the "New World." The two birds on the shield
are hummingbirds. Trinidad is sometimes referred to as the "Land
of the Hummingbird" because more than 16 different species of
hummingbird have been recorded on the island. The two larger
birds are the Scarlet Ibis (left) and the Cocrico (right), the national
birds of Trinidad & Tobago. Below these birds is our nation's motto,
"Together We Aspire, Together We Achieve."
NATIONAL FLOWER - THE CHACONIA
The National Flower, the Chaconia, (Warszewiczia Coccinea), called "Wild Poinsetta" or "Pride of Trinidad and Tobago" is a flaming red forest flower of the family Rubianceae.
NATIONAL BIRD - THE SCARLET IBIS
The scarlet ibis (Eudocimus Ruber) is the National Bird of Trinidad. The species is prolific in the northern regions of South America, including Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, and Trinidad. The scarlet ibis is a close relative of the American white ibis.
The bird is known for its striking deep red plumage that makes it stand out against the natural backdrop. However, juvenile ibises of the species are a blend of grey, brown, and white. They gradually grow into their red coloration through steadily ingesting red crustaceans, taking a few years to match the intensity of the adults’ brilliant hues.
Scarlet ibises usually range between 55–63 centimetres (22–25 inches) long, with males being slightly larger. They have long bills that grow to 7 or 8 inches long, which they efficiently use to catch their meals that burrow in the mud.
Their habitat in Trinidad is primarily the Caroni Swamp on the island’s western Gulf of Paria shoreline. There are several tour guides that operate in the swamp, taking visitors to see the bird-covered trees at sunset and other delightful natural phenomena.
By law, scarlet ibises are protected from hunting and any other form of decimation. Unfortunately, the illegality of harming the bird does little to deter some from purposely targeting them.
Despite this, the birds remain an endearing part of our landscape and culture, even depicted on our Coat of Arms.