April 30, 2004
Tobago Cays Education Forum a watershed event

“A watershed event.”
“I never realized how much I didn’t know about the Tobago Cays.” “I hope that the Government is listening.”
These were just some of the comments heard from persons who attended the Tobago Cays Education Forum, which was organized by the Friends of the Tobago Cays and the Alliance of Union Island Environmental Groups on April 24 in Union Island and April 26 in Kingstown.{{more}}
Over 60 persons participated in the Union Island Forum, while the Kingstown Forum attracted more than 90 persons.
In Kingstown, following the National Anthem, prayers and welcome remarks, the attendees were given a visual journey through the Tobago Cays to the accompaniment of the haunting sounds of a combination of Beethoven’s “Fur Elise” and the natural sounds of bird songs. This set the tone for the rest of the day, which included passionate presentations from representatives of the Southern Grenadines Stakeholders, an overview of the Tobago Cays and a history of the management of the Tobago Cays Marine Park.
The Forum also heard from regional and international experts whose presentations were based on actual experiences of successful marine parks in the Caribbean and the United States of America.
Many members of the audience were delighted to hear that through careful stewardship of the Tobago Cays by stakeholders in the Southern Grenadines and other users of the Tobago Cays, the turtles are back! And the fish stock is once again on the increase!
The Forum attendees were also entertained during the luncheon interval by the exciting Grenadines Dance and Drum Group.
During the closing session of the Kingstown Forum, the organizers were urged to continue their quest for the most appropriate form of management for the Tobago Cays, and to continue their campaign to educate every Vincentian on the need to preserve and protect our treasured resource – the Tobago Cays – while ensuring that this last resource does not fall into the hands of foreign nationals.