Connections, Collaboration, Comrades — UNDP & the Eastern Caribbean Planning Retreat 2019.
Over the course of two days the UNDP team members committed themselves to the task of finding tangible ways to make UNDP Barbados & the Eastern Caribbean, faster, higher & stronger. With this goal in mind, the team, led by RBLAC Deputy Regional Director Lenni Montiel and Resident Representative for UNDP Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean Magdy Martinez-Soliman, set out on a rewarding journey of planning, reflection and discovery.
On Day 1, Minister of Economic Affairs and Investment in Barbados, Honorable Marsha Caddle, in her impressive key-note address spoke of solidarity, collaboration and fact-based leadership. An inspiring message that set the tone for the retreat and provided the UNDP team with much to cogitate on. During the intensive discussions, specially invited guests from the international community including Canadian High Commissioner Marie Legault, Argentina’s Ambassador Gustavo Martinez Pandiani and UK High Commissioner Janet Douglas, asked tough and necessary questions in order to uncover how UNDP can become a better and more significant partner in the Caribbean. The insight and direction offered by Montiel and Martinez-Soliman throughout the course of the retreat allowed team members to step outside the confines of their associated disciplines and explore new perspectives on common goals.
Regional Center in Panama Director Jose Cruz-Osorio and the UNDP Resident Representative for Trinidad and Tobago, Sint Maarten, Aruba and Curacao, Randi Davis added meaningfully to the discourse on collaboration, shared their expertise and offered solutions on how to better leverage the assistance of other UNDP offices in the region to connect with those seldom reached and implement interventions that improve lives.
“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation”— and the UNDP team did not hesitate to participate in games which tested their creativity and intellectual agility while fostering camaraderie. Reinvigorated and reenergized, the group left the retreat even more committed to empowering lives and building the capacity for resilience in the Caribbean region.
UNDP Barbados & the Eastern Caribbean team works with governments and partners to create an enabling environment for sustainable human development in the Caribbean.