Lakeram Haynes

Lakeram Haynes

North Rupununi District Development Board
North Rupununi, Guyana

Meeting in the Rain Forest

Annual COBRA Project Management Board Meeting held in Iwokrama, Guyana

September 10, 2012

On 27th to 29th August, the COBRA Project held its annual Project Management Board Meeting at the Iwokrama River Lodge (IRL), Guyana. The meeting brought representatives from all the project partners, some who were visiting Guyana for the first time. The overall objective of the meeting was to assess the achievements and issues of the project’s first year of operation, and start looking at the way forward for the project.


Front row from right to left: Grace Albert (NRDDB), Bertie Xavier ( NRDDB), Jay Mistry (RHUL), Michael William (NRDDB-Chair), Demetrio Tiriyo (Apitikatxi), Lakeram Haynes( NRDDB), Rebecca Xavier (NRDDB), and Deirdre Jafferally (IIC). Back row from right Matt Simpson (WWT), Isabella Bovolo (IIC), Raquel Thomas (IIC), Elisa Bignant (Polito), Ryan Benjamin (NRDDB), Celine Tschirhart (RHUL), Geraud de Ville (IES), Wesley Pacheco (ECA), Caspar Verwer (IUCN), Andrea Berardi (OU), Rob Glastra (IUCN), Odacy Davis (IIC)

On Day 1 the partners reported on their role in the project, their activities to date and their progress and achievements. While some more work is needed to complete the work on documenting the current situation; the project has successfully submitted the participatory videos and photostories from the communities to the European Commission. However, during this session we learnt that our Brazilian Partners were experiencing difficulties in deploying the project in Tumucumaque. During the course of the meeting the team had various discussions on how best to help resolve this issue and keep the Tumucumaque communities involved. Equipe de Conservaçao da Amazonia (ECA) and Apitikatxi representatives indicated they will be holding a series of meetings in September and are hoping for positive news that will allow them to move forward.

On day 2 the partners reviewed the work that was done on each of the work packages of the project and how they would go forward. These explanations laid out how each work package links with the others in the lead up to work package 5 which will entail the sharing of community best practices with at least three other communities from the Guiana Shield countries: Guyana, Brazil, Suriname, French Guiana, Venezuela and Colombia. The team discussed criteria for selecting these communities and what process would be needed to engage with these communities. It also meant that partners would have to identify what they would need to prepare to engage with these communities.

On the final day, before the final session started, the group had a group photograph taken. At the final session partners were given the opportunity to clarify ideas or raise issues of concern. Following this, partners were split up in smaller groups to brainstorm on what can be done to take the results of the project forward and where potential additional funding could be looked for.

During the meeting there were also opportunities for seeing some of the sights the Iwokrama Forest had to offer. The two options were seeing the Essequibo Valley from the Turtle Mountain lookout point or experience being in the forest canopy from the Iwokrama Canopy Walkway.






QUICK DOWNLOAD: Check out the English version of the COBRA Handbook for Practitioners.