The Guyana Project is made up of 11 young designers. As a group, we are united by an interest in sustainable materials and ethical working environments. Inspired to learn firsthand how our concepts become products, we traveled to Georgetown, Guyana in May of 2009 to work in the Liana Cane Factory, which uses only non-timber rainforest products (NTRP) and is run by local activist and entrepreneur Jocelyn Dow. This same factory welcomed designer William Gordon, whose experience in social entrepreneurship was featured on Core77 in December of 2008. Our trip was organized by Pratt Institute’s Rebecca Welz, a design instructor and artist, and designer Patty Johnson, of the North South Project.
In Guyana we met and collaborated with factory workers and indigenous artisan weavers from the Wai Wai tribe. For over 8 hours each day we steamed, bent, cut, sanded and wove alongside the men and women of Liana Cane. At each step of the way, our designs were also shaped by the material constraints and constant direction of the skilled workers, whose knowledge of this process greatly surpassed our own.
“You have to take pride in your work and know good measurement,” said Shawn Singh, who has been working at the factory since it opened in 1993. “The hardest part about the work is finishing. First you have to rough sand, then another sand with another grain of sandpaper, then you apply sand sealer, maybe twice, and then you sand again with a finer grain of sand paper. And then finally, you apply the lacquer.”
Anticipation is building up around the UN Climate Change Conference scheduled for December 7-18 in Copenhagen, with environmental advocates expressing increasing concern that certain world powersâ€“including the United Statesâ€“wonâ€™t take a strong enough stand to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.
But whatever comes of the Climate Change Conference with respect to international environmental accords, thereâ€™s one piece of exciting news we can expect to see coming out of Copenhagen: the launch of â€œHope Plus,â€? a new online platform thatâ€™s been dubbed the worldâ€™s â€œonline Peace Corpsâ€? by founder Phil Noble, also founder of PoliticsOnline and technology adviser to President Obama during his campaign.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Tuesday praised as “one of the best” the oldest Peace Corps volunteer in the world, an 85-year old Florida woman serving in Morocco.
Clinton recognized Muriel Johnston during a meet-and-greet session of U.S. Embassy officials and other Americans in Marrakech, Morocco. Clinton was representing the U.S. at an international conference in Morocco, during a trip that stretched from Pakistan to the Middle East.
“I have to recognize — I just learned about this last night — Muriel Johnston. Muriel? Stand up, Muriel,” Clinton said to applause and cheers from Johnston’s fellow Peace Corps workers and other Americans.
“My young staff said, ‘Oh my goodness, Muriel Johnston, she’s the oldest Peace Corps volunteer in the world.’ I said, ‘That’s not the way we think about it.’ No, Muriel and I might say she is one of the best Peace Corps volunteers in the world,” Clinton said to more applause, emphasizing “best.”
Maps of the Peace Corps is a site hosting five decades worth of maps created by volunteers of their host communities.Â Check it out!
Cabul served in Guyana as a Peace Corps Volunteer from 2004 – 2006 in West Coast Demerara.Â Cabul is now a dual-degree MBA-MPH candidate at the Boston University School of Management.Â BU.edu recently spotlighted Cabul on their own side, heres a takeaway from the site -
Please tell us about your dual-degree experience.
Being a dual-degree MBA-MPH candidate has allowed me to see business innovations and public health initiatives from unique angles. If Iâ€™m at a management class and we talk about a positioning strategy to sell trial size toothpaste, I start to wonder about the potential effect this would have on dental hygiene in the population of a developing nation.Â Correspondingly, when we have a discussion in my public health class on a global health initiative to distribute anti-retroviral drugs for HIV throughout a nation, I begin to contemplate the operational challenges and potential bottlenecks that may arise in such an endeavor.Â The exciting challenge about going after both the MBA and MPH is trying to piece together the lessons learned from both programs to come up with comprehensive and effective solutions that help populations in both the U.S. and the developing world.
The wife of Guyana`s first President, the late Arthur Chung, has passed away after a brief illness. She was 77.
The Office of the President said Doreen Pamela Chung, died Saturday but funeral arrangements were still up in the air as of last night. Mrs. Chung leaves to mourn her two children â€“ Diane Pamela and Raymond Arthur (Jr.)
Her husband, President Chung, served from 1970 to 1980. President Chung died on June 23, 2008, at the age of 90.
Our shirts are durable 100% cotton. The tastefully screenprinted FROG logo on the front is sure to catch the attention of the casual passerby so you can tell them all about Guyana and FROG. We have a limited quantity, and once they are out â€“ they are out! So order quickly and order several before you miss your chance to be the coolest FROG supporter on the block.
You can find these lovely shirts here – http://www.guyfrog.org/t-shirts/
President Barack Obama announced his nomination of Aaron Williams to be Director of the Peace Corps. “America was built on a belief that the best progress comes from ordinary citizens working to bring about the change they believe in,” Obama said. “Through a lifetime of service, Aaron Williams has embodied the very best of that American ideal. I am grateful for his service and honored to nominate him to direct the critical work of the Peace Corps.” Williams currently serves as Vice President for International Business Development with RTI International. He has previously served as senior manager at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), where he attained the rank of Career Minister in the US Senior Foreign Service.
As USAID Mission Director in South Africa, Williams led a billion dollar foreign assistance program during President Nelson Mandela’s administration. Additionally, he has done work with strategic design and management of assistance programs in Latin America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Further, Williams served on the Advisory Committee on Voluntary Foreign Aid at USAID, and has been awarded the USAID Distinguished Career Service Award and the Presidential Award for Distinguished Service twice. Williams also currently is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and serves on the Advisory Board of the Ron Brown Scholar Program, the Board of Directors of CARE, and the Board of Directors of the National Peace Corps Association. From 1967-1970, Williams served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Dominican Republic. Upon completing this service, he became the Coordinator of Minority Recruitment and Project Evaluation Officer for the Peace Corps in Chicago from 1970 to 1971. Read more.
Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Chairman of its Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Peace Corps and Global Narcotics Affairs, released the following statement after the President announced his nomination of Aaron Williams, Vice President for International Business Development with RTI International, to be the Director of the Peace Corps. Dodd, a returned Peace Corps Volunteer, who served in the Dominican Republic, recently introduced the Peace Corps Improvement and Expansion Act of 2009, which would combine a reform with growth strategy in order to achieve the goal of doubling the size of a reformed, streamlined and more effective Peace Corps.
“I am excited by Mr. Williams’ nomination to be the new Director of the Peace Corps,” said Dodd. “It’s exciting to have a nominee who served in the Peace Corps and also has experience in international development and management. I look forward to discussing the urgent need for broad based reform at the Peace Corps with Mr. Williams at his confirmation hearing and to working with the Obama Administration to strengthen and expand the Peace Corps.” Williams served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic from 1967-1970. After completing his service, he became the Coordinator of Minority Recruitment and Project Evaluation Officer for the Peace Corps in Chicago for a year. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Peace Corps Association.
From Peace Corps Belize