The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture, Delegation in Guyana under its Flagship Project Family Agriculture has once again demonstrated it support to Bee-keeping in Guyana. On this occasion the Institute in partnership with the Guyana Livestock Development Authority and the Guyana Apiculture Society executed a three (3) part activity targeting Apiculture in Region 9.
The first part which was lead the Sustainable Rural Development Specialist, consisted of an awareness interview which was held on the 15th November 2017 was broadcasted live on Radio Lethem 95.1 FM. Mr Neil Grant and Mr Linden Stewart, Chairman and Vice Chairman respectively of the Guyana Apiculture Society along with Mr Arnold De Mendonca of IICA comprised members of the panel. The panel discussion highlighted IICA’s work in Region 9 and also focused upon the management of bees, their capture in the wild, and their general husbandry. This radio intervention advertised, and “paved the way” for the second activity which was held in the Conservation International (CI) Board Room on the following day.
The Day 2 activity at CI was a Focus Group Discussion and training activity. The focus group discussion which was led by the IICA personnel, sought to assess the level of bee keeping in the Region particular in Lethem and its surrounding areas. This activity has been a follow-up to the recently held Regionally Agricultural Commercialization Exhibition (RACE) that was held in Lethem in which IICA participated. At the exhibition, IICA was approached by a few practicing Bee-keepers who indicated their need for technical support. Thus, the intervention at CI was to target the training and other needs these and other bee keepers in the Region. The results of the assessment will contribute to the planning of a strategy to provide assistance towards bee-keeping in Region 9 in 2018.
Preliminary needs indicate that participants need practical training and resource documentation to gain experience in the activity. One distinct request was to establish a facility for bee-keepers to participate in an internship program to work/study with an experienced bee-keeper as to gain hands on knowledge. Further, they also requested assistance relative to marketing and processing of their product.
For the focus group discussion, the visiting team focused the discussions on the following areas:
The one-day activity attracted thirty-two participants comprising experienced bee-keepers and individuals interested in apiculture.