Week 2 and 3 blog:
I must say these two weeks flew by. After a lot of reading I decided to change the focus of my report which means I had to read a new set of documents, change my report and proposal (what a task) but I am confident in the new direction I am taking. I am learning about the evaluation and selection process used to screen potential applicants that may be eligible for micro and small grants that will be used towards their businesses within the four sectors (agriculture, tourism, crafts, and fisheries). This grant is different for Micro small & medium sized enterprises (MSMES) and community based organizations (CBOs). For example a MSME get a smaller amount of money than a CBO. If awarded the grant, the funds are supposed to make their business/livelihood more sustainable such as fisherman installing a solar panel on his/her stall which is a form or renewable energy which in turn reduces the utility bill. I had so much questions about the application process that I decided to analyze it more intently. If successful I will be able to answer my research questions as well as answer some lingering questions the caribsave project officers have, so it’s a win-win situation.
The highlight of week 2 which I absolutely enjoyed and was thrilled to be a part of was being able to accompany two senior project officers to the Global Environmental Facility- Small Grant Program (GEF- SGP) grantee network learning workshop with two senior project officers ( Nicholas and Nikki). It was an informal workshop where small associations and organizations in Barbados who had programmes or initiatives dealing with the environment such as organic farming and climate change education attended. This workshop was held at the United Nations location in Barbados. I was amazed to see the small island of Barbados had A UN building filled with offices. I love meeting new people and learning new things that’s going on at the grassroots level.
The workshop was very interactive and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There were 4 organizations that had one representative. Throughout the workshop we listened to an issue each one was facing and then we brainstormed ideas, had discussions and I even formed connections with two associations I was interested volunteering with after my internship.
This week I focused on the methodology section of my paper which seemed to be much harder than I anticipated. The project officers really helped me find a focus on how to write this section such as structuring the questions the right way, asking the right kind of questions, and general criticisms and advice.
I like that every task I am asked to do for the project officers they take their time to thoroughly explain what the task is, how to do it, the purpose of it and other particulars. Nikki the project officer I work with the most has helped me out a lot. She talks a lot of time out of her busy schedule to assist me in any way, even if it’s a simple question.