The Exxon Mobil Foundation is providing multi-year support to the Iwokrama International Centre through the Guyana Conservation Initiative. Iwokrama is managing this grant with technical support from the Environmental Management Consultants Inc. This initiative focuses on thematic areas including but not limited to awareness on marine and conservation issues, ecosystem restoration, livelihood initiatives, and community support.
This initiative focuses on thematic areas including but not limited to awareness on marine and conservation issues, ecosystem restoration, livelihood initiatives, and community support.
Pre-harvest inventories are a basic requirement for Sustainable Forest Management (Guyana Forestry Commission’s Code of Practice, Reduced Impact Logging and Forest Certification Principles and Criteria).
Inventories were completed in 6 Management Units and included topographic surveys, tree enumeration and mapping and road and skid trail layouts.
Photos of — Maps
Permanent sample plots are permanently demarcated areas of forest (usually 1 ha), which are periodically remeasured. They are the basis for growth and yield studies and provide knowledge on forest changes under different situations such as climate change and they inform carbon storage capacity.
Photos of — PSP’s
Post-harvest Silvicultural Surveys are intended to determine the level of compliance to the GFC Code of Practice for Harvesting by examining the harvesting operations and impacts. Post-harvest surveys were carried out on 3 closed Management Units with 23 felling blocks.
Photos of — PSP’s
Iwokrama has engaged with the Gender and Forests Group, an informal collection of Guyanese professionals interested in strengthening the connection between gender and forests. The GFG is conducting research in forest communities including 3 Friends, Maria’s Delight, Commack, Yarrowkabra and Mainstay/Whyaka.
Additional research is being proposed in Fair View, Surama, and Orealla
Photos of — Outreach Region 10, Charcoal
Heriot Watt University in collaboration with the NRDDB, Iwokrama, aims to develop new knowledge on the ‘connectivity’ challenge of climate and water. Through engagement, the aim was to create infographics that will become a permanent point of reference for communities.
Photos of — Fair View village meetings, Maps, Yupukari village
Iwokrama monitors key physical and biological components in and around the forest and the related social impacts to measure and track changes over time. Long-term monitoring is used to identify and evaluate the impacts of human activities on the environment.
Monitoring activities includes boundary, road and river patrols, climate and weather, traffic and water quality.
Photos of — Signage, River Monitoring, Biophysical and Boundary Monitoring.
The MRU is a group of skilled indigenous women researchers from villages in the North Rupununi. It was formally established to study the Makushi biodiversity, ethno-medicine, and culture. The MRU is currently involved in teaching oral Makushi language in schools, promoting awareness of domestic violence, and promoting traditional culture.
Under the GCI Grant the MRU Team conducted outreach sessions in 20 communities on key social issues include alcoholism, teenage pregnancy and child abuse.
Photos of — Karasabai, Massara, Outreach
The Grant supports the quarterly NRDDB meetings, at least one meeting annually is held at the Iwokrama River Lodge. This forum also provided Iwokrama the opportunity for the NRDDB and to discuss ongoing projects, plans and activities.
(The NRDDB, established in 1996, is a locally formed Amerindian community-based organisation composed of village leaders and other community representatives.)
Photo’s of — NRDDB Meeting…
The NRM Course – “An Introduction to Natural Resources Management for Practitioners” was held from September 5th – 9th 2022. The course hosted 43 persons from national agencies, conservation partners and indigenous communities. It included presentations from partners, national agencies and site visits to a Mangrove Site, Dakoura Mine Reclamation Site and Yarrowkabra Forestry Training Centre.
Photos of — Training.
Iwokrama restarted its school outreach programme in Georgetown, which targets 3rd and 4th Form students. Outreach was held with Kingston Secondary on July 4th (2 sessions) and Campbellville Secondary July 5th
Outreach is expected to continue in November.
Photos of — School outreach
An assessment of the long-term impact of Iwokrama’s sustainable harvesting operation on faunal diversity mainly birds and bats by UG student Arianne Harris (PhD). Ms Harris has submitted her thesis, which is currently under review. After which she will be given the opportunity to defend same.
Photos of — Research team.
The Tour Guide Course – “An Introduction to Interpretation and Tour Guiding” was held from August 1st to 6th 2023. This immersive course was held at the Iwokrama River Lodge and hosted 15 persons from national agencies, conservation partners and indigenous communities. It included presentations from trainers, role playing activities and visits to a Turtle Mountain, the Canopy Walkway and Surama Village.
Photos of — Tour guide training exercise, Surama, Rewa, Annai
In 2022, with support from the GCI Grant Iwokrama supported and/or resuscitated existing clubs in 6 communities – Fair View, Wowetta, Rupertee, Toka, Yupukari, Surama and started 1 new club at the Bina Hill Institute in Annai.
An additional 10 clubs were started/restarted – Annai, Rewa, Kwatamang, Yakarinta, Massara, Aranaputa, Apoteri Crash Water, Kwaimatta, Qwatata in 2023. Club Activities include Birdwatching, Wildlife Monitoring and Training and Capacity Building.
In April 2023, Iwokrama and the NRDDB hosted a Wildlife Club Festival for all 17 clubs under the theme “Protecting our culture and Natural Environment”. Activities included Banner Competition, Costume, Art, Poetry, Cotton Spinning Archery.
Photos of — Equipment, ODK Training, WLC Festival, Public Speaking