Lakeram Haynes

Lakeram Haynes

North Rupununi District Development Board
North Rupununi, Guyana

COBRA meets in Kwamalasamutu

Local and international COBRA staff shares approaches and practices in a local community in Suriname

October 14, 2013

From 30 September to 13 October, members of the COBRA project visited the indigenous community of Kwamalasamutu, Suriname. This visit marked the start of the final phase of the project: sharing experiences and building capacities for identifying community-owned solutions for present and future challenges.

Project COBRA - Creative Commons

Project COBRA – Creative Commons

Kwamalasamutu is a relatively large community and is represented by nine indigenous tribes, the dominant tribe being Tiriyo. Walking into the home of a Tiriyo would be like visiting family or friends in our Rupununi home and being served our traditional meal of tuma with cassava bread and kasiri drink. The aim of the visit was to help build capacity on participatory videoing and photograph and identifying the things that made their community a viable one and what they saw for their futures development.

The work was done in phases. The first was to build the capacity of the local participants in using cameras, taking pictures and videos and then editing those into short movies and photostories. The next phase was getting the participants to understand the approach used to identify the best practises. They identified the things that made their community a viable one and what they saw for their future development. Using these, the community was able to identify some of their own possible solutions to situations that might be their best practices. During the evenings the team screened the best practice videos:

  • Self-help for community development
  • Transmission of culture to youths
  • Traditional fishing techniques for daily living
  • Farming with choices
  • Community partnerships for development and
  • Radio Paiwomak: maintaining and improving communication

After the screenings of the video the village showed keen interest in implementing the self-help best practice. Over the next three months the community will attempt to implement the steps highlighted in the best practice video and photostory on how to carry out community self-help.

The team will return in January 2014 to see how they are doing.

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