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Bye Grenada & Hello again Minnesota

Sadly I have not updated the posts here as I hoped I would have. I’ve been home now for 6 weeks and will try to do better of updating here and on  another blog I will be writing on for my new position, which I will also write about.

Below was written my last week of service while still in Grenada.

__________________________________________________

My year in Grenada is finishing up this week I am finishing projects, saying good byes, and packing up. I do not think this is the end of Grenada for me. I really enjoyed this island. And heard or was told that in the lower Caribbean, it truly is one of the friendliest and nicest island.

In this past year I was able to:

  • Meet with 50 established beekeepers and 30 people interested in
    beekeeping, assessed their knowledge and resources to understand
    feasibility of needed trainings, equipment and appropriate technologies.
  • Documented known 86 beekeepers and kept a contact list of 31 interested
    people for the Association and others use.
  • Offered assistance to all and worked one-on-one with 16
    beekeepers trouble shooting problems, learning and sharing best practices
    and using appropriate technology and techniques for the limitations of the
    island.  
  • Monitored and evaluated skills and advancement over the course
    of working with each of the beekeepers.
  • Supported the Ministry of Agriculture extension agent with
    visiting beekeepers to assist them in their ventures. Knowledge and
    expertise was shared in terms of exporting, value chains in Grenada and
    importing of goods beekeepers would need.
  • Created and implemented course curriculum specific to the
    island of Grenada: Introduction to Successful Beekeeping: What you need to
    get started and Bee Pests, Disease & Integrated Pest Management:
    Understanding and Identification. Training 25 people over all these 2
    courses given multiple times and locations to make it more available.
  • Created, managed and communicated through Facebook page, Gmail
    and WhatsApp application to keep beekeepers, interested people and public
    aware of events, classes and information.
  • Through further research and fieldworks, capturing of information
    from beekeepers and other people on the island Ms. Wannarka correlated,
    designed and wrote 160-page electronic book “Honey Bee Plants in Grenada,
    Eastern Caribbean:  Nectar, Pollen,
    and Propolis source plants” to assist beekeepers, interested people,
    farmers and others conserve and increase bee plant fodder and knowledge on
    the island. The book was sent via email, WhatsApp and the Facebook page to
    beekeepers, interested people and other contacts made through the past
    year.
  • Attending monthly was able to
    attend the St. George’s University Bee College in May 2015 and there met 14
    other beekeepers from the Caribbean and Florida University that she kept in
    touch with and shared information with.
  • Assisting Belmont Estate, an Agro-tourism
    historic plantation. Specifically helping with their Goat Dairy project one day
    a week with communication from a U.S. based manager to the Belmont estate
    office handling the payroll, encourage staff and oversee overall process. This
    allowed Ms. Wannarka to see and understand the financial and payroll process of
    a business on the island. Working with the staff of the Goat Dairy Project and
    Belmont estate was a pleasure.
  • Liaisoned with other organizations on the island to share her
    expertise and knowledge with. Grand Bras Estate is a historic 100-acre farm
    that employs 20 people for year around vegetable production. Through discussion
    using bees for pollination was found to be possible and helpful to improve the
    vegetable crop in a few fields on a trial basis.
  • Attended
    community meetings such as GRENED, Grenada Education and Development Programme;
    SADO, St. Andrew’s Development Organization and Grenada Creole Society Meeting
    and Lecture in Concord, St. John’s. Ms Wannarka also participated in a panel
    for STEM Opportunities in the Peace Corps Webinar for Western Pennsylvania to
    share Peace Corps and Response experience
There is no comparing this service to my last in Senegal, West Africa. There are many cultural similarities, but everything else now looking back at it with a month+ perspective is good. 
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One thought on “Bye Grenada & Hello again Minnesota

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