Rachelle Bong A Jan

Rachelle Bong A Jan

Attune Development
Suriname

Collaborating with COBRA on knowledge-sharing in Kwamalasamutu

Field Report n°14

February 11, 2014

This is an report by Rachelle Bong a Jan, of the Surinamese NGO Attune Development. Rachelle has been working with COBRA on the project of Best Practice sharing with the community of Kwamalasamutu.

P1090601Attune Development is a young Surinamese NGO, established in 2013, who strives to assist and empower public and private stakeholders involved in sustainable development and environmental conservation and management, by reinforcing their capacities. We have extensive practical experience in community engagement and have established long-term relationships with several indigenous and maroon communities of the interior of Suriname. It is out of common interest for traditional communities and community based natural resource management that the collaboration between Attune Development and the COBRA consortium was established.

The collaboration entails the implementation of Workpackage 5 of the COBRA project in the community of Kwamalasamutu, Suriname. The first project activity comprised the organization of a capacity building workshop from September 30th until October 14th 2013, which introduced village participants to the methods and techniques applied by COBRA. Training was necessary to enable the participants to identify and document their own best practices formulated in response to socio-ecological challenges and additionally, to implement and record one community owned best practice chosen from the best practices shared by the COBRA team from North Rupununi, Guyana.

P1090486Due to the extensive amount of information that needed to be shared with the Kwamalasamutu team in a restricted amount of time, we made several adjustments to the training course to ensure all activities were delivered. Other challenges were also experienced in terms of time consuming translations required, from English to Dutch, and from Dutch to Trio… and vice-versa. In spite of these challenges, it was a very rewarding learning experience to be able to contribute to the inter-community knowledge exchange. We are looking forward to learning how the participants have progressed with their activities. We are hopeful that the exchange will prove beneficial to the Trios in helping them deal with emerging challenges.

 

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