Ciénaga and Santa Marta Fishermen were Trained to Optimize Fishing Work

May 14, 2016

*A certificate of participation in the Basic Workshop Course on Minor Repairs in Fiberglass and Basic Motor Operation was awarded to the students who met the academic requirements.

Certified fishermen are accompanied by officials from each participating entity.
Certified fishermen are accompanied by officials from each participating entity.

Drummond Ltd., in fulfillment of the goals set in its Socio-Environmental Management Plan and specifically for the program of handling fishing activity, held a cycle of training modules for fishermen from Ciénaga, Don Jaca and Aeropuerto (the latter two areas belonging to the jurisdiction of the Santa Marta District) along with strategic partners, the General Maritime Directorate (DIMAR: Dirección General Marítima) and the Santa Marta Coastguard Station.

“This training is provided as part of a response to the suggestions and needs identified in previous meetings held with the committees of fishermen at the beginning of the year,” explained John Encinales, environmental engineer of Drummond Ltd.

After completing the training program, the 21 students who met the requirements defined by the specialized instructors received their certification in Minor Repairs in Fiberglass and Basic Motor Operation. The ceremony was held in the Ancla Room of the coast guard station located on the Santa Marta army base.

Fortalecimiento CSIR_DLTD_3

During the presentation of the certificates, the Santa Marta Harbormaster, Frigate Captain José Manuel Plazas, expressed his pleasure with the initiative and its achievements: “The Harbormaster’s Office accepted Drummond’s very nice invitation to form part of the process of reviewing the initiatives of the fishing associations and communities. We have been involved by contributing our technical knowledge, in the framework of the functions of the maritime authority, and have articulated a course with the Coast Guard with the aim of driving development with these associative communities and fostering their self-sustainability.”

The course included topics important to the activity of fishermen. The first module included basic knowledge of repair of fiberglass boats and was taught by NCO Third-class Carlos Claro López. He held ten four-hour classes twice a week (on Tuesday and Thursday) and shared his knowledge and successfully trained the participants.

Regarding the training, Jonathan Martes Rodríguez, a Ciénaga fisherman, said, “I am grateful to Drummond for the achievements we reach today. We hope that there will now be more opportunities to apply what we have learned.”

The first educational module for the fishermen included: chemical and reaction characteristics of the boat materials, safety measures for handling the components when making a repair, and instructions on the aesthetic techniques to use when fixing a boat.

Following the first training cycle, a second module began on basic knowledge of outboard motors, which allowed the fishermen to become acquainted with the structure and mode of operation of a motor.

“At the workshop, the fishermen learned to resolve any emergency situation that can place their lives at risk on the high seas. During this training they were provided with basic knowledge for operating a motor and preventing potential failures that can occur during their use,” said NCO William Escorcia, who was the instructor for the second practical module.

Alberto Ruíz, a fisherman from the Aeropuerto area who has been fishing for fifty years, understands that this traininig is both education and saves money. “These courses are helping us because the training on motors, in particular, will allow us to solve a technical failure ourselves in some cases. Sometimes we can’t send the boat for repair because of lack of funds and mechanics charge a lot of money,” he said.

On his part, Commander Javier Bermúdez stated, “When this kind of partnership is achieved we are contributing to maritime safety, but we are also allowing these disadvantaged communities to improve their quality of work. In this way, we are definitely contributing to progress through the education.”

For Drummond Ltd. it is important to contribute to community growth. For this reason the company, together with the Santa Marta Coast Guard and the DIMAR, will continue to strive towards creating more strategic partnerships that permit the expansion of the  fishermen’s knowledge and simulotaneously contributing to the integral development of the region.