CELEBRATING 9 YEARS OF SUSTAINABLE GROWTH & DEVELOPMENT

This Earth Day (April 22nd) we celebrated One Eleuthera Foundation’s 9th Anniversary and the continued fulfillment of our mission to strengthen, connect and plan with people and organizations to create sustainable change on Eleuthera.

This journey started with a Shared Vision and a resolute decision to empower our local communities to become thriving, self-sufficient ecosystems driving social change and spurring economic growth.

Reflecting on the impact and progress of nearly a decade we’re deeply grateful to you, our faithful partners, for believing with us, generously supporting and joining our mission. Your continued support is making a long-term impact in the lives of many.

Today, as we work in unison to stabilize, rebound and navigate the ravaging effects of a lingering health pandemic and a significantly diminished Tourism industry, we’re also embracing our resiliency and ingenuity. The work OEF set out to do all those years ago has found an even higher purpose at a time when we need it most. OEF is providing real hope and solutions, momentum, and a clear path to a more sustainable future amidst a period of global recovery.

At the top of our priority list is food sovereignty, access to affordable housing, increasing employment outcomes through innovation and skills training, and strengthening our core programs and organizations.

With the revitalizing energy of Spring surging, we excitedly look forward to the new capital projects breaking ground at our CTI campus in Rock Sound, including the debut of our Cravo Cooling House and Farmers Market and the finalization of our affordable, sustainable home prototypes.

Together we pledge to continue this mission by reimagining, planning, strengthening and connecting for a better, brighter future. We hope you enjoy reading about some of the hope-inspiring projects that are sustaining and strengthening our communities, thanks in great part to you!

With gratitude,

Shaun D. Ingraham
President and CEO

STUDIO FOR SUSTAINABLE AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING LOOKS
TO SOLVE HOMEOWNERSHIP CHALLENGE

University students and industry professionals are currently collaborating on the new affordable, eco-friendly, resilient home prototype designs.

The Studio for Sustainable and Affordable Housing is underway. This innovative project will encompass research, design and construction of affordable, sustainable housing models, providing access to low-cost home options for Eleutherans.

The design and selection process will be driven by research into several variables: environmental impact, resiliency, comfort, functionality, constructability, and affordability. This project has engaged Bahamian and international university students and sector-specific professionals to conceptualize and construct the housing models with Michael Singer Studios acting in an advisory role.

Phase one began last fall with students from the Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), University of The Bahamas (UB) and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC) creating proposals for designs.

The chosen prototypes will be constructed on a demonstration site at our CTI, Rock Sound campus and will serve as an interactive ‚ÄúLive and Learn‚ÄĚ property for sharing all forms of data collected from the project.

Consideration will also be given to making these homes hurricane resilient as The Bahamas has experienced a significant uptick in catastrophic, high-intensity hurricanes in recent years. Methods for sustainably refurbishing existing homes will also be explored.

NEW CRAVO COOLING HOUSE
ACCELERATING OEF FOOD SOVEREIGNTY GOALS

Cravo Cooling House to revolutionize farming in Eleuthera with improved climate control and hurricane impact features.

BIG NEWS FROM THE FARM

Construction is underway on our revolutionary one-acre Cravo Cooling House. This capital project is a major development for our organization and will accelerate progress toward achieving national food security and true food sovereignty for our island and country.

The ‚ÄúCravo‚ÄĚ differs from a traditional Greenhouse in that the roof and walls are fully retractable. This game-changing innovation allows automated control over temperature, precipitation, wind and sun radiation exposure. In turn, this will create the optimum climatic conditions for growing vibrant, healthy produce while supporting year-round harvesting. Crops traditionally grown in only the cooler winter months will now be viable in the hotter summer months.

The Cravo structure will also protect crops from extreme weather and hurricane-force winds. Should windspeeds increase beyond 130 mph, (Category 4 Hurricane) the Cravo’s roof and walls will retract completely to save the structure from destruction.

Hydroponic production will be used inside the Cravo to grow leafy greens, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and more. Local farmer training will be integrated as new techniques are introduced. The Cravo build-out is expected to be completed before the end of summer. Stay tuned for more exciting developments coming soon!

NEW FARMERS MARKET LAUNCHES THIS MONTH!

Our very own delicious, sun-ripened tomatoes                          

Fresh field-to-table produce from the farm

Our new campus Farmers Market facility is completed. The newly refurbished 1,930 square foot, open-air facility will house fresh produce harvested directly from our farm and provide easy access to the public. This extensive 12-week renovation project employed skilled graduates from our very own CTI Carpentry Program.

Starting at the end of May local farmers and artisans will be invited to participate in our cooperative community Farmer’s Market. Here they’ll be able to sell their produce and showcase native food products alongside authentic Bahamian handicrafts and art.

This multipurpose building will also be used to facilitate training and education programs for local farmers to enhance their farming knowledge and business acumen.

Right now it’s harvest season on the farm and many local restaurants and food stores are taking advantage of the flavorful, premium produce and competitive prices. For local orders and deliveries of fresh produce and organic eggs call 242-825-4053.

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THE RETREAT HOTEL WELCOMES GUESTS BACK TO ELEUTHERA

Warm smiles and hospitality await at The Retreat at CTI.         

Bahamian and nature-inspired themes and art adorn each room.                                                                                                     

The Retreat is back in business! We are grateful that Tourism is rebounding in Eleuthera as visitors begin returning to our shores for safe and relaxing holidays.

We look forward to welcoming new and returning guests for a one-of-a-kind rejuvenating stay with us! Our quaint bungalow-style, 16-room Retreat doubles as the only hospitality and hotel training facility in The Bahamas. Here, students of CTI are able to gain valuable hands-on training and experience while delighting our guests!

Each spacious, well-appointed room is newly refurbished and offers modern turnkey amenities, privacy, and all the comforts of home. Guests can enjoy outdoor activities such as nature walks, swimming in our Olympic-sized pool, and tours of our on-site farm.

Coming Soon!  Healthy farm-to-table cuisine will soon be available at our signature Tea Room restaurant, conveniently located at The Retreat.

For bookings email: retreat@oneeleuthera.org

TRAINING CONTINUES AT CTI DESPITE COVID-19 CHALLENGES

Our school, CTI – Centre for Training and Innovation – is abuzz with students pursuing new avenues of training to enter the workforce and start their own businesses. Through in-depth education, hands-on training, and mentorship our students are building a viable future for themselves and their families on the road to economic independence.

Above: Carpentry students busily working on class projects. Left: Culinary class and students of HIGS partner on food fundraiser, successfully raising $900 for the school’s Zero-Waste project.

Right: Culinary students perfect their newly acquired skills.

CTI-H.I.T.S. SPRING 2021

Through our partnership with the Harbour Island Trade School, the CTI-H.I.T.S. program will celebrate the graduation of another cohort of Carpentry and Basic Culinary students next month. The spring courses which ran for twelve weeks and nine weeks respectively provided students with theoretical and practical training but also an immersive and enjoyable experience.

Each course featured local guest instructors who added value and specific industry knowledge to the curriculum.  As part of the service-learning component, the Carpentry students built community picnic tables and benches. They also restored the outdoor stage at the Catholic Church Parish in Harbour Island and constructed a much-needed fence for the Harbour Island Green School.

The Culinary class partnered with students of the Harbour Island Green School to put on a culinary fundraiser under the theme: ‚ÄúCelebrating Black Cultures Around The World.‚ÄĚ This collaborative event raised $900 with proceeds going toward the school‚Äôs ‚ÄúGreen Friday‚ÄĚ initiative, an ongoing zero-waste project.

CTI SPRING 2021

BEEKEEPING WORKSHOP – FEB. 17TH & 18TH
A free two-day Beekeeping Workshop was held courtesy of a UNDP-SGP, Global Environment Facility (GEF) grant. Ms. Shacara Lightbourne, the Acting Country Representative and Technical Specialist for the Inter-America Institute for the Cooperation of Agriculture (IICA) provided education on the importance of bees as well as the biology, ecology, and technical aspects of Beekeeping. In addition to the theory components of the curriculum, the class visited local apiaries to observe bees in their habitats and harvest organic honey. Participants received free Bee Boxes which they assembled during the workshop in order to start or expand their existing beehives.

 

AGRICULTURAL WORKSHOP РFeb. 22nd -26th 
Local farmers in Eleuthera were able to take advantage of a free, week-long Agricultural Workshop Series facilitated by CTI and conducted by Dr. Michele Singh, Animal Scientist and Country Representative for the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute  (CARDI.) This exciting series was fully funded under the Cotton Bay Fund for South Eleuthera. Topics covered included: Natural Pesticides, Poultry Production and Management, and Small Ruminant Production and Management.

Ms. Shacara Lightbourne assists a student with getting into the proper beekeeping gear.

Students of the Poultry Production & Management Workshop proudly display their battery-layer chicken cages.

EXCITING DEVELOPMENTS FROM SEEP

SEEP Emergency Operations Center, Tarpum Bay, Eleuthera

Core Partner SEEP Hires A New Administrator

In February, South Eleuthera Emergency Partners, (SEEP) welcomed a new Administrator, Mrs. Shakera Carey-Gardiner to the team. Mrs. Carey-Gardiner assumed responsibility for the day-to-day operations, recruitment and training of new volunteers to strengthen the organization’s emergency response capabilities.

Ms. Carey-Gardiner has over ten years of experience in Local Government, community development and has held leadership roles in leading civic organizations. Building on SEEP’s strong foundation, she will also work to implement new community programs and assist in raising awareness of the organization’s work within the community.

With the organization’s expansion in the North and the continued implications of COVID-19 affecting the entire island, the demands on SEEP have grown. Adding a full-time Administrator has assisted greatly in building the team’s capacity and reach as the organization strives to give Eleutherans equal access to life-saving ambulances and fire trucks.

The 2021 Hurricane Season starts June 1st. SEEP will also be proactively preparing its disaster response protocols and hurricane preparedness plans. The mission is to safeguard residents before and after the storm and where possible mitigate the severe impact and disruption that ensues after a natural disaster.SEEP receives no Government subsidy. This volunteer-run program requires ongoing operational support and donations to continue providing essential emergency services to our community.

THANK YOU! to all who have made gifts to sustain and expand these essential services.

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SEEP VOLUNTEERS RECEIVE REFRESHER TRAINING

Left: SEEP Volunteers strengthen life-saving skills.

Right: Mr. Jai Leah, Trainer & Head Paramedic (Family Medicine Center, Rock Sound)

The first SEEP training exercise of 2021 took place in March providing First Responders from across the island with a refresher course in essential emergency response skills. Practical training included CPR, First Aid, and what to do to save lives within the first critical minutes of a medical emergency.

The training was conducted by Mr. Jai Leah, Trainer & Head Paramedic at Family Medicine Center, Rock Sound.

ONE ELEUTHERA FOUNDATION PAVES THE WAY FOR OTHER NPO’S

One Eleuthera Foundation’s Social Enterprise Accelerator program (OEF-SEA) is helping to build the country’s non-profit sector and empowering other organizations to serve communities and build sustainable change throughout The Bahamas.

Under the 2019 Act, all NPO’s¬†operating in The Bahamas (with a few exceptions) must register to be compliant. In August of 2020, we launched this program recognizing that many small organizations were operating informally with little funding or structure and struggling to understand the new requirements.

OEF-SEA offers support through free legal advice and administration services. This ensures that other local NPO’s¬†can continue to operate, thrive and make a difference.

Our services include guidance in getting established as Unincorporated Associations; drafting of their Constitution and the registration of Directors and Members. Once properly established, we assist these organizations with completing the registration paperwork and collecting the supporting documents from the Registrar General.

Ms. Susy Siel, Executive Director of Freedom To Read, (right) collecting her certificate at our Eleuthera office from Yolanda Pawar, Chief Communications Officer.

Ms. Zelda Allen from Mobilize Outreach Bahamas collecting her certificate from our Nassau office.

 

 

A TRIBUTE TO OUR DEAR FRIEND MRS. SALLY SEARLE

Mrs. Searle cuts the official ribbon at the opening of the SEEP (Wemyss Bight) Emergency Operation Centre with Shaun Ingraham, CEO of OEF.

Mrs. Searle receiving an edible vegetable arrangement from the OEF/CTI team.

Today we mourn the passing, but also celebrate the life and valuable contribution of our dear friend, Mrs. Sally Searle. For over ten years Mrs. Searle was a part of our family, generously supporting the vision and mission of the One Eleuthera Foundation and Centre For Training and Innovation. She was a compassionate and spirited individual, committed to living life with vigour and zest. Mrs. Searle loved Eleuthera, and more importantly Eleutherans.

Having made Eleuthera her second home over 50 years ago, there was a deep-seated connection and heart-bond to her island community and its people. She found ways to make a positive difference by championing important causes and generously supporting not only our organization but numerous others.  Along the way, she formed meaningful relationships with members of our team that will surely leave a true and lasting impact. Mrs. Searle enjoyed her final sunset, here on her beloved island of freedom on May 2nd, 2021.

We join in sending our sincere, heartfelt condolences to her children and family as we reflect on precious memories and continue to give thanks for her life; one that was life well-lived.

 

 

ENJOY THIS MONTH’S VIDEO FEATURES


Learn more about our Studio For Affordable And Sustainable Housing Project
WATCH NOW

CLICK TO WATCH the nomination video for the Community Impact Award bestowed on Shaun Ingraham, CEO of OEF, by his alma mater Emory University.

Thank you for supporting all the initiatives outlined above and others designed to help local families while building stronger communities. With your generous support in the coming year, we will continue to INNOVATE, RESPOND and PROVIDE SUPPORT to IMPROVE the lives of Eleutherans and others throughout The Bahamas.