Barbuda’s diaspora galvanising for the island’s future

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The recently held ‘Envisioning Barbuda for 2030 and Beyond part 2’, has been described as a successful dialogue event which focused on improving life in Barbuda.
Organiser of the event, Barbudan born, Dianne Jeffers, said that the exercise, which was held at the Ebenezer Pilgrim Holiness Church in the Bronx, will result in a long-lasting relationship among Barbudans locally and internationally.
“The event was extremely successful,” Jeffers said as she explained that it was “a participatory leadership dialogue done in a workshop format.”
According to her, positive change in Barbuda begins with strengthening the relationship between Barbudans living abroad and those on the island, particularly, community leaders.
“Barbudans have realised for a long time now and are realising that everybody has a plan for their future, so this dialogue helps us to begin to think about what type of future we want to see on our island.
“The concentration is on creating a shared vision of a preferred future for Barbuda by 2030 and the potential role of the diaspora in helping to shape the desired future,” Jeffers told OBSERVER media yesterday.
She emphasised that the plan is not just geared towards bettering the island for 2030 but beginning to do so now.
She added, “The event facilitated conversation which is going to be shared with Barbudans and Friends of Barbuda in New York, England, Canada; eventually culminating into a reunion on Barbuda later this year.
“These sessions were really designed to build trust and collaboration, to develop a greater capacity for an ongoing dialogue among members of the diaspora; and more so to begin to plan for the implementation of a dynamic new agenda that is coagulant with our vision.”
Noting that Barbudans and Friends of Barbuda played important roles in making the exercise a reality, Jeffers explained that the event was part two of a workshop that was done in November of last year.
She said this process forces Barbudans to look at alternative tools and resources and become more proactive in shaping the future.
She said, “This vision was really led and facilitated by Dr. Claire A Nelson of Washington DC, the ideation leader of the Future’s Forum, a research and education consulting practice, specialising in bringing the power of strategic foresight and the discipline of sustainability engineering to challenges facing organisations and communities.”
Jeffers added that this initiative gives everybody a chance to have a say and there will be the ultimate conversation in Barbuda later this year. 

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