By Amy Avenant
Environment Outreach Coordinator, DECR
We started the day with a turtle conservation and tagging information session hosted by DECR Environmental Officer Katharine Hart.
In light of our talk, we decided to clean up our beach to ensure the health of the lovely waters and creatures that call it home. A community member saw what we were doing and offered to take all 5 bags of trash to the landfill. Thank you sir!
After a well-earned lunch, we practiced our swimming skills learned from Ben on day 2 and had some recreational time.
By Amy Avenant
Environmental Outreach Coordinator, DECR
It was great fun today on EcoCamp Day 2. We boarded Reef Peepers for a boat ride (a first for some of us!) and snorkeling! We saw many little fish hanging about and one BIG fish too, a territorial barracuda.
After lunch, we learned to swim and improve our skills with Mr. Ben Strubenberg from the TCI Swimming Federation.
A huge thank you to Reef Peepers and Ben Strubenberg for the donation of their time and equipment!
By Amy Avenant
Environmental Outreach Coordinator, DECR
EcoCamp Day 1 on Grand Turk started with an ice breaker as we all got to know each other. Kids participated in a poster workshop to illustrate what the term “environment” means to them.
We explored the museum and learned about the coral reef and Mr. Glinton gave us a quick history lesson about the Molasses Reef Wreck.
After lunch we watched the BBC film Blue Planet: CoralSeas
On Monday, 6 June 2016 , the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources (DECR) hosted the annual Environmental Stewardship Awards in honor of World Environment Day (5 June, 2016).
Forty recipients, including the Turks and Caicos National Museum, were honored. The awards were given to individuals and organizations that contributed their time, equipment and /or financial assistance to promote conservation and an environmentally sustainable TCI.
Oseta Jolly Primary School Visit
On Friday May 13th 2016 we welcomed thirty eight grade four students from Oseta Jolly Primary School. Ms. Browne and Ms. Corrine accompanied their grade four classes. They toured the garden and the Caicos Heritage House as well the timeline at the Development Office. We had some great interaction and since they toured other historical sites that same day they were able to make connections that made their visit even more interesting. They are now looking forward their upcoming visit to the museum in Grand Turk.
Provo Christian School Visit
Provo Christian School’s grade twos visited the Museum’s Development Office and Caicos Heritage House and Exhibit on Friday 20th May 2016. The group of twenty- six students was accompanied by their teachers Ms. Gardiner and Ms. Jones. They were particularly interested in the Caicos Heritage House Exhibit, they even showed the actions that would have accompanied use of the various implements in the house.
Please call the Grand Turk museum at 946-2160 or 247-2160 if you would like to schedule a school trip.
Or if you are on Providenciales and would like to visit our Provo campus, please call 241-2161.
We are always happy to accommodate a school group and we can help you by tailoring the visit to a specific interest or your curriculum.
On Saturday 30th April, RBC Royal Bank partnered with the Turks & Caicos National Museum Foundation for the maintenance and care of the gardens and grounds of the Caicos Heritage House. Following its past partnership on the Wise Water Project to help create water conservation gardens and awareness, RBC Royal Bank has pledged financial support for landscaping maintenance and has committed to its staff’s voluntary service for helping with upkeep of the agricultural, native plant, and medicinal plant gardens.During the ceremony, there was also a planting event of Caicos pine, the National Tree of Turks & Caicos Islands. Four Caicos pine trees grown by the Caicos Pine Recovery Project under the Department of Environment & Coastal Resources were planted at the Caicos Heritage House as part of the Project’s National Tree Restoration Strategy for outreach and education. B Naqqi Manco of the Department of Environment & Coastal Resources led the tree planting.
This collaborative effort demonstrates a commitment to the conservation of natural resources and historical preservation amongst the private, non-government, and government sectors. The event was hosted by Museum Representative Candianne Williams, who stated “We are happy to accept the continued and additional support of our established partner, RBC Royal Bank, and we hope to cultivate more partnerships like this very successful one.”
The Caicos Heritage House, a representation of a Nineteenth Century Caicos Islands homestead, is open to visitors 9AM-1PM weekdays and is located in the Village at Grace Bay.
On Thursday April 14, 2016 a team from CMK Realty Corporation representing the Sailrock Development of South Caicos met with Pat Saxton to discuss collaboration on the creation of a historical walking tour in Cockburn Harbour, South Caicos.
Scott Hoskins, President of CMK Realty along with Liz Le, Marketing Director and CJ Walstrom, Marketing Specialist spent the afternoon touring the Museum and the Botanical and Cultural Garden. The history of South Caicos and points of interest for inclusion in the walking tour were the focus of the discussion. B. Naqqi Manco from the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources (DECR) also attending to provide background information on the natural history of South Caicos.
We applauded the Sailrock Development for taking the time and effort to make sure their tour is historically accurate. The Museum hopes that all new developments will take these important steps to ensure that accuracy and sensitivity towards the local natural and cultural history are considered.
In 2012 Bryan Naqqi Manco (DEMA) together with a team from the Turks & Caicos Islands Environmental Club and under the Department of Environment & Maritime Affairs under the “Rescue & Collection of Endangered & Endemic Plants” Project, rescued several very special orchids from the path of development and bulldozers on North Caicos.
All five of TCI’s native Encyclia orchids were planted in the Museum Botanical Garden and have flourished despite their early rough start (to read more about their rescue read Orchid Survivors in our blogs). This spring one of these tough, beautiful orchids, the Roufus Encyclia, sometimes called the Butterfly Orchid, is putting on a show. This orchid is found throughout the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Islands. It normally blooms red-brown (rufous colored) but here it usually blooms yellow or green.
The blooms are on long stems, up to 90 cm long, and can have more than a dozen flowers that may redden with age.
Please do come by, see and smell this extraordinary Museum’s living collection every December to April; other species of orchids will flower at different times of the year.
Thank you to all who came out for the first in our 2016 series Evening with the Experts with Mr. Ivan Day, one of Britain’s foremost food historians. Day is particularly noted for his reconstructions of period meals and has curated exhibits in many museums in the US and Europe including the Getty Museum, the New York City Metropolitan Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
In Royal Ragoos: Courtly Dining and the Cookery in Early Georgian Britain, Day took us back to a time where food was not only for fuel, but for presentation and a statement of wealth. The craftsmanship of the dishes presented to 17th Century royalty were incredibly and painstakingly beautiful—and all done without electricity! They even had ice cream..and molded it to look like vegetables and fruit!
We thank Mr. Day for taking time out from his holiday to give this lecture. We should also point out that he is the elder brother of Grand Turk residents Seamus and Paul, who are our friends and neighbors.
For more about the work of Ivan Day see the following links:
NY Times: Setting a Place for History
BBC Country File: The Evolution of the Country Christmas Dinner
Historic Food: A Feast for the Eyes
The Getty Museum: Celebrating Sugar in The Edible Monument
As a member, you can have a front row seat to these special events. Join the Museum today so that you too can experience this wonderful series for free! Non-members $10.
Reference to the Turks and Caicos Islands is synonymous with miles of beautiful white sandy beaches and excellent snorkeling on the coral reefs. These reefs support marine life, contribute significantly to the economy and protect the shoreline of these islands. Therefore coral reef conservation and preservation should be of paramount importance to us all. One of the ways to ensure this is through education.
Turks and Caicos National Museum, TC Reef Fund, Department of Environment and Maritime Affairs are all involved in the coral reef education of our youth on these islands and have now joined forces to develop a coral reef conservation and preservation curriculum for grades one through six focusing specifically on the Turks and Caicos Islands. This is being done in collaboration with the Department of Education and will be integrated into the National Curriculum, currently being developed by the Department of Education to be introduced into schools September 2016, at the beginning of the new school year.
A workshop will be conducted for teachers to introduce them to the coral reef conservation and preservation education program and the resources and support available to them to bring a practical component to the program. It is our hope that this program will foster a better understanding of and appreciation for our marine environment in our youth. We trust that the environmental groups that will be the offshoots of the program will be a catalyst to coral reef conservation and preservation island-wide.