Maine’s Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program and IMTD's Climate Change & Human Security Program have found common ground in Bolivia.
Maine’s Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program, the oldest and one of the largest citizen lake monitoring programs in the nation, has long been on the forefront of citizen lake science. Over the nearly five decades, the VLMP has been in operation, our winning strategy for protecting water resources through direct citizen engagement has been adopted by governments, nongovernmental organizations (NGO’s), and other lake-oriented groups across the US.We have been pleased and honored to share ‘lessons learned’ and resources to help to ensure the success of these, our sister lake monitoring programs. More recently, called upon to help our counterparts in three Canadian provinces, the VLMP model of effectiveness and efficiency went international. As a result, many key VLMP resources (protocols, training, and reference materials, etc.) have now been translated to French!
This summer, our international scope began its migration to the south when we had the good fortune to meet Adam Zemans, Director of the Climate Change and Human Security Program at the Institute for Multi-Track Diplomacy. (IMTD is an international organization whose mission is to promote a systems-based approach to peacebuilding and to facilitate the transformation of deeply-rooted social conflict, with a historical focus on environmental issues.) Adam, a US and Bolivian citizen with a keen interest in water resource issues, was introduced to the VLMP by of one of our certified monitors. As Adam learned about the VLMP, (exploring our website, and eventually attending three different VLMP trainings), a grand idea began to form.
By Gabriel Maisonnave
“My grandson died of pneumonia,” Esther explained as she wiped the tears from her eyes.
The conflict between the Pokot and Samburu tribes of Northern Kenya has forced Esther, as it has many families, to keep moving further from danger. Sometimes this meant sleeping under a bush for nights at a time until they found more stable shelter. It was during one of these nights that her grandson became sick. Making a fire to keep warm at night was out of the question; enemies would be able to spot the flame.
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