Save The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Facebook Group Membership Explodes

One week ago, John Da Silva started a group on Facebook.com – Save The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary.

After only seven days, the group is heading for 3,000 members from all over the world. Yes, the Obama generation is saying “Yes We Can” in Barbados too!

I wanted to write a bit more about the unbelievable growth and worldwide membership that this Facebook group is experiencing, but I’m late for work (again!) and I’ll have to cut it short for now.

Here is the latest report by John Da Silva. Big things are happening, friends…

Report from John Da Silva to the Facebook Group: Save The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary

I had a productive meeting with the manager of the GHNS and a representative from the NGO, Friends of Graeme Hall. From that meeting, and from information I have received from different sources, it appears that the main point of contention is the lack of commitment from government for the creation of the Graeme Hall National Park. Without this commitment to the preservation of the entire area, the long term ecological viability of the GHNS cannot be assured, as development to the north and east of the Sanctuary (such as the Water Park that was proposed a few years ago) would seriously and negatively impact on the delicate ecosystem.

The government also needs to put in place a properly functioning sluice gate which will not only provide drainage to the wider area, but will also allow sea water, crucial for maintaining the ecological balance of the swamp, to enter. The present sluice gate has not worked properly for many years. The GHNS paid for staff from the relevant government departments to visit Florida on a fact finding mission to see the latest sluice gate technology used in the Everglades. Nothing, however, has come out of this visit to date.

Our best efforts in the short term will be to harness the membership of our group (fast approaching 3000) to illustrate to government that there is considerable grass roots support for the creation of the National Park, and by extension, saving the GHNS. I will be asking each member of this group to e-mail the newspapers, blogs, appropriate government officials, Ministers and the Prime Minister to let them know that our collective voices must and will be heard. I will provide some guidance on the content and tone of the message, and the contact information shortly, although what you write is completely up to you.

I am going to change the focus group to encompass the wider vision of the creation of the Graeme Hall National Park, of which the GHNS would be an important component.
As Barbados becomes increasingly urbanised, such managed green spaces will provide an important natural respite for both residents and tourists. The GHNS and the proposed National Park will present an easily accessible ecological attraction that will provide the necessary balance to the over-exuberant coastal development now taking place.

I intend, as far as possible, to keep government politics out of our efforts, as such politics are not a friend of the people. I am not here to attack the lack of action of the previous BLP administration on the Graeme Hall issue or any perceived disrespect shown to Mr. Allard as a major investor in Barbados or as someone who tried to improve Barbados, first and foremost, for Barbadians. That is all in the past. What I am concerned about is making a change and empowering people to have their voices heard. For too long, we have boarded the bus once every five years but have had no say on where the bus goes only to be unhappy at where we end up at the end of the journey. Let us flex our collective muscle in a constructive and focused manner and make a difference.

What Is All The Fuss About?

Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Closing – World-Class Eco-Tourism Attraction, 85+ Jobs Gone – Canadian Philanthropist Gives Up On Barbados

5 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Environment, Traveling and Tourism

5 responses to “Save The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Facebook Group Membership Explodes

  1. birdie

    It would make a great shooting preserve ! Many years ago we went duck shooting there which was great sport.
    At least make it a economical venture. Big mouths are naught so let those stingy people open their wallets. We don’t need another white elephant for us to support !!

  2. reality check

    Hurray!!!

    a grassroots effort

    Do not let up as you will be ignored, maligned and have your motives impugned.

    As to the last comment by birdie, maybe the few remaining birds left in Barbados can be issued and taught to use shotguns which can be directed at the old generational rednecks? Its a very rare bird, unable to adapt and with a very low intelligence.

  3. Thank you Barbados Free Press for your coverage. Yes, something special is happening here.

    Everyone who is one Facebook, please join the group. You can access the group by clicking my name above.

    Also, please attend the open day at the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary, this Sunday, November 9, from 8:00am to 4:00pm. A huge turnout will send a very clear signal to the government that action is needed immediately to set up the Graeme Hall National Park to ensure the survival of the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary.

  4. The DLP Promise July 2007

    http://dlpbarbados.wordpress.com/2007/07/04/graeme-hall-national-preserve-must-maintain-its-integrity/

    “We recognise the uniqueness of the Graeme Hall area and is opposed to any part of it being turned into a water park or used for any type of commercial development. The fragility of the Graeme Hall ecosystem must not be disturbed by callous development.”

    So ten months after obtaining power, where is the National Park?

  5. Sakura

    We have just returned to Canada Dec 10th after a most enjoyable holiday in Barbados. We had the pleasure of spending several hours at Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary, we took our lunch and sat watching the wild life while we enjoyed it.
    We were alarmed when our friends told us that it was to be closed on Dec 15th, what a gem to loose.
    With the right promotion that would be a great attraction to visitors.
    After our visit we went back to the resort and told some of the other visitors about it, a few days later some of them thanked us as they had been to visit and were also sorry it was closing.
    The tour operators i.e. Air Canada and West Jet representatives that live on the island and do the presentation to the visitors when they arrive could easily have promoted the centre.
    I realise politics is involved here but we truly wish a way could be found to keep the facility open not just for the visitors but for the educational program for the islands children.
    We would willingly sign a petition if it would help.
    Thank you to the Barbadians for a great holiday.