island life

Posted By: Anonymous

island life - 09/04/02 03:06 AM

We are spending a month in an island called Maui. Here the community and gov. has been guided somewhat for centuries by the idea of "aloha". The king had no army, cops, or jails. He governed by smoozing and helping so many people that everyone liked him or owed him a favor.
Caye Caulker has maybe 500 or 600 adults. Some are homebound or have other reasons not to particpate in community life. That might leave only 300 or so people. If you can get 200 to agree with you like the Maui kings did then you can bring positive things to CC.(Hint: Bitter remarks don't work)
Message boards like this can actually change the minds of enough folks to make a change on the ground that you can see.You need reach only a handful of us in an island society like ours. Along with your great ideas perhaps one might include a way to implement them on this sandbar for real.
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: island life - 09/04/02 07:26 AM

How many Caye Caulker residents actually use this board? Sometimes it seems like ONLY residents (locals, semi-locals and foreigners) are using it, but it also seems like the same 10 people, not a huge majority of the population.
Posted By: Capt. Bill

Re: island life - 09/04/02 03:57 PM


But if the locals using the site are in business (like most are)they will inter-react with others and change is possible. It all boils down to being positive. Everyone can see the negative but it is much harder to see the positive...some can see what a project will look finished and others can't...we are all different. Help those who can't see the bright future of CC.

Posted By:

Re: island life - 09/04/02 06:06 PM

Capt. Bill,
What does FWIW mean?
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: island life - 09/04/02 08:12 PM

For what its worth?

Sounded good anyway. lol
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: island life - 09/04/02 09:52 PM

Here here to Capt Bill. Heartily agree that Caye Caulker residents should cut the silly backbiting and look at the positive. This island is so beautiful and has so much potential. Good changes should be welcomed as a benefit to all.
Posted By: Ragga Gal

Re: island life - 09/06/02 09:06 PM

I'm in.
Posted By: memingwa

Re: island life - 09/07/02 12:58 AM

Remember that most all big things start small, often as an idea, or vision, or wish. Also remember that if you throw a small pebble into still water, it will create large rings that spread out much farther than the pebble could ever touch.

OK, OK, enough abstract, mystical parables: I agree with most everything every poster has written. What CC could use is a good community organizer; a person who works to build consensus, or at the very least, compromise that people can accept. Do you think something like a Peace Corp volunteer could do the trick? Is there any BZE or CC native that could be this community organizer? Would it be better if it were an outsider, since they could be the catalyst & also take the heat so that locals could continue to work toward established goals, rather than being slowed by the personalities and the politics.

In the states, communities do land use plans. It's a complex process that can involve the citizens every step of the way IF THEY CHOOSE TO BE INVOLVED. While it's complex, it doesn't require lots of education to accomplish, just a successful model to adapt, and willingness to do the homework. As Allie says, some best practices could be utilized, for all aspects, even the plan. Don't reinvent the wheel. Just borrow the best one you can find, tweak it to fit the island, and commit your body, heart, soul and mind. If you can't do that, then visibly and vocally support those who ARE doing it.

When something positive is going on, people WILL notice. Then, slowly, they will begin to believe that positive change can happen. And regrettably, it then takes them a while to jump in and help or just support the efforts.

From some of the other posts, it seems that one of the first movements might be to identify a BZE'r that is honest, will work for the common good, is strong enough to withstand some "blows" and has shown themselves able to pursue something for the longer run. Once these folks are identified, they can be approached by the group wanting change. They can be asked to serve as a community leader, especially on the village council & other positions of political influence and power. If you find some (even one) who agrees to run, then you organize the campaign to educate the voters, or even get people to vote, and get them in office. the work can really begin at that point.

As someone said, how can this be accomplished? Maybe it can't......yet. Perhaps the seeds are tiny and take a while to germinate. sometimes that happens. But just because it will take a long time doesn't mean it isn't worth doing. And each person can do their thing in the best possible way. Educate your children about fairness, and community, and conservation, and integrity. They may be able to accomplish what their parents cannot.
Posted By: Capt. Bill

Re: island life - 09/07/02 10:41 PM

Well said! small steps turn into a path for others to follow.

Posted By: Anonymous

Re: island life - 09/07/02 11:02 PM

Obviously the contributors to this thread are new to the island. Many positive things have evolved on the island over the decades. If you have something specific you want to initiate, go ahead.
Not to be the bummer here but there does exits here and everywhere some real and ugly things as well and to ignore them or not talk about them does not make them go away.
Posted By: memingwa

Re: island life - 09/08/02 08:32 PM

OK, "what's best" I can certainly admit that there is truth to your statement. Even though I am new to the island, I'm not foolish enough to believe that no one has ever done anything to improve the island life for those who live there. I can even admit that my ideas may not be right for CC. What I read on this board is that there are some things that need changing and there are some things that are working,and some that are working are in danger of falling by the wayside because of certain obstacles. So my remarks are coming from that information.

But don't just cut and run with your comments. Be specific. You are not registered, so no one knows who you are. Why is your message so cryptic? Are we supposed to figure out what things you classify as progress and what you consider ugly? And for those things that are working: how do you support them continuing? And for the ugly: what solutions have you found, or what do you propose?

I have been told before that I am a dreamer and that the ideas I have are simply the imaginings of an overly optimistic person. When I was young, such remarks did not stop me from trying. I discovered that I learned as much from the trying as I did from the actual accomplishment. And I am fortunate that many of my dreams actually happened, some for a short term, some are still going. Now that I am older, I am able to use the strength and wisdom I have gathered in my "tryings" to sustain me when some would say I am dreaming.

So please come back and give us the benefit of your tryings. Share your wisdom with us. We will welcome it. We may not all agree, but most of us are willing to consider your words.
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: island life - 09/09/02 04:10 AM

I think the post saying specific projects are what is needed is on the right track.Coastal Zone is trying to form a big overall plan with a lot of input from many folks. Amanda French, the latest Peace Corps worker, just finished a posting here.FEMRACC is a group representing many groups that is charge of one Reserve.
-How about cleaning the streets without pointing any fingers?
-Community planting or gardening? 500 trees a year done properly could change the Caye into a lovely garden. I suspect I know where those trees could be donated for free.
-How about zoning? We are too small a village to have zoning under the laws of Belize. Those who live next the bars know how bad zoning is needed. This has caused some deep differences between island residents.
Another benefit to having residential only areas -your local customer base comes from there. Grassroots support could bring zoning as a Special Area Resolution since CC has already been named a Special Area.
Posted By: memingwa

Re: island life - 09/10/02 08:42 AM

Great post, keycocker! A wealth of info and specific suggestions. A great start and it's good to learn of some things that are going on now.

How do/did the locals feel about the Peace Corp worker? From the tone of your post, I gather she was accepted and helpful. Will CC get another PC worker? Does it want/need one? I've known a number of ex-Corps folks. All were committed and inteligent, with many positive attributes. More about working with than leading. Just another tool, several said.

The details you've given highlight some projects that can be joined; others that could be started. There must be other folks with the same interests, or with other suggestions.

keycocker's post is full of hope and visions and action, rather than negative discussions of what's not right. It's easy to be negative if one is uninformed. Some one smart said "knowledge is power."

Where would one go to get some donated vegetation? If all of us who visit plant even a few trees/other greenery while there, CC can be restored to before the last 2 hurricanes....don't ya think? And what a kick to return and see your plantings green and growing.

It's my understanding that no vegetation or seeds can be carried into the country. Is that correct?

Another suggestion for us visitors: find a project you support and give a few $'s toward the cause. How could we locate legit stuff to support?

thanks for changing the tone of the tune, keycocker!
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