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Me encantan los mapas

GIS_map_compressed

Buenas tardes, Compañeros. I just arrived in Guatemala City after a 15.5 hour bus ride from Escuela Agricola Panamericana – otherwise known as Zamorano University — which is located near Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Despite the many, long bus trips, I had a really great week spending time with almost all of our field staff. The first two days we honed our skills with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) which will help our field technicians and program officers document and monitor our project sites with greater accuracy.  The fact I was able to participate and learn about GIS was fun for me, and will likely improve my ability to collaborate and assist our people in Central America  from our Cambridge office. To gain practice with our GIS skills, we visited the local watershed with Zamorano professors and GIS experts to gather data — which more or less meant defining its borders — and then we went back to the lab to input and map the data. Really cool stuff if you´re into maps as I am.

The last two days of the week were spent sharing presentations from everyone´s work. All those present — 13 in total — gave at least one power point presentation that summed up her/his work in the field so far this year. Each presentation also allowed for questions and answers afterwards so there was a lot of discussion and sharing of successes and challenges. For me, hearing these presentations was amazingly informative. Our field technicians and program officers are really the hands and feet of EcoLogic – and hearing about agroforestry, stoves, microwatersheds, etc. directly from those implementing our projects was invaluable.

I´m really tired, which you can probably tell because I’ve scarcely made a joke or a pun! Still I wanted to provide you with an update on this incredible week before it concluded.

Buenas noches!

– Chris Patterson, Program Officer for EcoLogic

Chris collaborates closely with the senior program officer by writing grant proposals and project reports, investigating potential funders, and following trends in philanthropy, conservation, and international development. Chris was a fellow for the Ford Foundation’s Difficult Dialogues Project and documented his time working from EcoLogic’s regional office in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala from March to June, 2011. 

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