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CARIBBEAN - San Andres Archipelago (Colombia) Activities


Community Visioning

In the early part of 1994 the people of Old Providence and Santa Catalina, two small islands in the south western Caribbean and part of the San Andres Archipelago, carried out their own process for strengthening community involvement in planning and decision-making. They hoped that their work would lead to an improved quality of life for them and their children, as well as creating a stronger community spirit.

The community visioning process began when it became known that permits had been issued for two foreign development projects on the island of Old Providence. Community members, drawn from NGOs, church groups, community groups, local politicians and the Ministry of the Environment worked together for eight months. The result was a Municipal Development Plan that was adopted as the development policy for the islands.

As the island community sought to realise their vision and to implement their plan, which included a small scale, locally owned ecotourism industry, they have come up against many obstacles including a lack of air access and a 'boycotting' of the island by the national tourism industry, combined with air crashes and hurricanes.

At the beginning of 2005, the subject of community planning was discussed on the Small Islands Voice Global Internet Forum, and in particular one response referred to this initiative in Old Providence and Santa Catalina.

As a result of the interest generated, it was decided to assess the community visioning process in Old Providence and Santa Catalina in the second half of 2005. A local organization, the Providence Foundation, carried out the assessment, see their brochure. Invitations were sent out to the community and the results have been compiled in a report.

One of the most important outcomes of the assessment is that the island community is embarking on a new visioning process to plan collaborative action in the face of changing circumstances.

For other islands interested in starting their own community visioning process, a bilingual (Spanish and English) booklet has been prepared in the form of a powerpoint presentation detailing the steps required to undertake a community visioning process.

 

 
 

To get involved, contact :

 
 

National Coordinator
Ms Elizabeth Taylor
Corporation for the Sustainable Development of the Archipelago of San Andrés,
Old Providence and Santa Catalina (CORALINA)
Km 26, via San Luis, AA 725, San Andrés Island, Colombia
T: ++578 512 8589
F: ++578 512 0081/8589
E: coralsai@telecom.com.co

 

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