May 9, 20131227Views

              Thursday, May 9- Participants from the Virgin Islands and seven Caribbean countries have learned new methods and techinques, followning successful completion of the Regional Safer and Greener Building Course at the H. Lavity Stoutt Communtiy College (HLSCC).

            The training opportunity, which was held from April 29 to May 3 at the college’s Marine Centre, included participants specifically from the sister islands of Virgin Gorda, Anegada, Jost Van Dyke,  Antigua & Barbuda, St. Kitts & Nevis, Dominica, Barbados, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

            This course which has been held at the college for several years and geared towards training building professionals was revised to include the emerging area of “Green Construction.” The Green construction practice expands and complements the classical building design concerns of economy, utility, durability, and comfort and was based on the Green Toolkit prepared for health facilities in the Caribbean by Pan American Health Organisation.  Topics covered included site preparation, access road construction, building layout, as well as foundations, walls and roofs design and construction, storage of materials, and maintenance. 

During the closing ceremony Lead Instructor, Dr. Glasgow said, “The course has been a real eye opener for participants, especially as it relates to engaging the services of a surveyor and engineer to assess the property and scope of the project. We are confident from this experience that they will be able to apply what they learned to their future professional endeavours.”  

Other course facilitators included Mr. Louis Potter, Mr. Ronnie Lettsome, Mr. Kelvin George and Mr. Gregory Adams who all focused on construction plannin and how it helps in tiem timely and cost-effective completion of well-built structures. 

Keynote speaker, Member for the House of Assembly, Honourable Archibald Christian said he had completed the course in 2007 and was pleased with what he had learned. He spoke about its relevance to ensuring that building professionals have a means to improve their technical skills. 

 “You have been fortunate to have a cohort of facilitators that come from across the spectrum of development and construction including architects, engineers, planners and surveyors and who were able to share their knowledge and experience with you over the past week,” he said.    

Honourable Christian added, “In the Caribbean region we have to ensure that we build as safe as possible especially from the threats of earthquakes and other natural hazards.  Let’s not fool ourselves some people take short cuts that can come at great expense later on.  We can never build too safe; we have to build as safe as we can in this part of the world.  I urge you to pass on your newly acquired knowledge to others and to the clients you serve.”

Dean of Workforce at the HLSCC Dr. Derry Hodge, who was instrumental in organising the course said, “We are delighted to have been able to offer this course to students from the Caribbean region. Our partnership with Caribbean Disaster Management Agency (CDEMA), PAHO and BVI Department of Disaster Management (DDM) made it all possible.”   

The course was sponsored by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Caribbean Disaster Management Agency (CDEMA) Coordinating Unit, Department of Disaster Management (DDM) and hosted by the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC)