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SER symposium themed “Protect and Preserve Our Paradise, Sint Maarten’s Ecological Treasures Unveiled”.

HARBOR VIEW—-The Social Economic Council (SER) will be hosting a symposium on Thursday afternoon, October 12th, 2023 at the Belair Community Center. The theme of the symposium is “Protect and Preserve Our Paradise, Sint Maarten’s Ecological Treasures Unveiled”. With this symposium the SER has chosen to focus on the social and environmental impact and well-being of the community. The event will commence at 1 pm and concludes at 5.15 pm.

The SER is honored to present various expert speakers on the subject matters. The keynote address will be delivered by Professor Ellen van Bueren, who is a fulltime professor at the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment of Delft University of Technology. The governance and management of urban development in support of a sustainable built environment is at the core of her work. She is involved in research on policy, planning and decision-making for climate adaptation, urban resilience, and circular built environments, calling for collaborative action from public and private stakeholders, including individual people. Professor van Bueren participates in the Islanders at the Helm programme, aimed at co-creating research on sustainable and inclusive solutions for social adaptation to climate challenges in the (Dutch) Caribbean. The programme established a Trans-Atlantic academic Platform (TAP) fostering research-based education on climate challenges for the six Dutch Caribbean islands.

International speaker Mr. Martyn Forde is the founder and director of the climate-resilience and regenerative design-focused consultancy – Future in Nature Synergies Inc. The firm supports clients in the design of comprehensive strategies for capacity strengthening and workforce development. Currently, Mr. Forde is aligned with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Caribbean Electric Utilities Services Corporation (CARILEC) in the creation of a learning and development strategy and Community of Practice for electric power industry professionals to enhance 1) organizational leadership, 2) resilient infrastructure and disaster recovery and 3) low-carbon energy transition. Local guest speaker Mr. Denicio Wyatte is the founder of Spaceless Gardens. Mr. Wyatte holds a bachelor’s degree in multimedia technology and has an avid love and passion for culinary arts. He is the creator of Cultural Xpression Newsmagazine and founder of St Maarten Agricultural Research and Development Center, currently exploring, researching and executing projects in the field of Agricultural Science aimed at the sustainability of Eco Tourism and Food Security for country St Maarten. Mr. Wyatte aspires to create community-oriented projects that will help build awareness and encourage change in the areas of extreme hunger, poverty alleviation, food security, sustainability, ECO Tourism, entrepreneurship, self employment and community resilience. His core belief is that individually we can make a significant change in the world, if we adjust our life qualities and perspectives, one person at a time while focusing on what is most important for the survival and longevity of mankind. Guest speaker Mr. Benjamin Ortega is the current Environment Social and Governance Manager at Port St. Maarten Group. Mr. Ortega oversees and aids projects ensuring environmental, social, and governance standards within national and international standards. His leadership has also been recognized in various Business and NGO roles, such as serving as the President of the St. Maarten Chamber of Commerce and Industry and serving on the Board of The SER (Social Economic Council of St. Maarten as a Substitute member.

After the keynote, international and guest speaker’s address, an interactive toolbox session will ensue, led by members of the NPower Foresee Foundation and facilitated by various NGO representatives of our community. The session will conclude with an “Ask the Experts” exchange in which the experts will address the various questions and comments arising from the toolbox session. Members of the creative content agency “Digital Island” will also be present to offer information regarding

The objective of the symposium is to bring together experts, policy makers, non-governmental organizations, other stakeholders and the general public to deliberate on the pressing ecological concerns, that require our collective attention for the sustainable development of our nation. The symposium aims to increase awareness of sustainable urban development, biodiversity, climate change, the environmental, social and governance (ESGs) whilst gathering potential solutions to adapt and mitigate the negative effects of the aforementioned. It is the intention that each attendee leaves the symposium equipped with knowledge and feeling empowered to take inspired action, individual or collective, towards becoming a more resilient nation.

The SER hereby extends an invitation to persons that are interested in attending the event. Kindly RSVP at (all registrants are subject to review).