It was our final week at Tobacco Caye and right in the middle of our plans came Hurricane Ernesto. Based on numerous surveys and interviews with community members, we finally decided on four different projects to present to the community. One major project is rodent control; rats tend to nest in large piles of and coconut husks that have not been burned. Another project is a safe swimming area. Tobacco Caye has many water taxis, tour boats, catamarans and fishing boats that speed into docks at a dangerous rate.
A few people have thought that a safe swimming zone would require boats to slow down as they enter the caye and protect swimmers & snorkelers from harm. A good business project is for the availability of a tour guide training on the island. The best option would be a subsidized project for interested parties to only pay a small fee. The final project is a fully functional solar system so that the island does not have to use noisy and costly gas generators. Unfortunately, Ernesto came around and the whole island was evacuated the day of our planned community meeting. Now we have four great projects but no clear direction as to where to go next. Any ideas?