The farmers in Jamaica would like to learn meadmaking, and there is a fall opportunity for someone to go down and help them out. Read on for details.

DO NOT REPLY WITH QUESTIONS HERE. Please direct any questions/inquiries or applications for this position to Agape Adams at Yerba Buena Farm Jamaica: yerbabuenaja@aol.com.

This is a sustainable beekeeping project that started 3 years ago. We've been bringing down volunteers to teach Jamaican beekeepers the skills and information we need to make our operations both environmentally and economically sustainable. The beekeepers have requested volunteers who can teach mead-making. When we harvest our honey, we wash our cap pings or combs and could make mead from that honey water. Something that most people throw away could become a valuable and marketable product.

There's local tradition of tonic making, but that just basically involves boiling some medicinal roots and herbs, sweetening the tea, bottling it and burying it under the ground, at the root of a tree. We get lots of vinegar and lots of exploding bottles. There is definitely room for lots of learning here - not much understanding at all of the science of fermenting, or how to control the process so that you get the product that you want, consistently.

The volunteers come through the USAID funded Farmer to Farmer program, which is coordinated by Partners of the Americas. Here's a link to the page of the Partners website that describes the program:

http://www.partners.net/partners/Overview2.asp

Here's a link to the Farmer to Farmer blog postings that describe our project:

http://farmertofarmer.blogspot.com/s...arm+beekeeping

Here is a link to our website:

http://yerbabuenafarmjamaica.com

- The volunteers come on an all-expense paid trip that lasts from 2 weeks to one month. There is a $500 budget attached to each volunteer's trip for equipment or supplies needed to make the project a success. We here at Yerba Buena Farm do all of the necessary organizing so that the volunteer can just focus on content and skills transfers instead of logistics. Partners of the Americas requires that each volunteer produce a report detailing the calendar and accomplishments of the trip. As part of Yerba Buena Farm's request for each trainer, we do fill out a form, one section of which asks us what the trainer should bring with her or him. We list all sorts of suggested stuff to pack, including mosquito repellant, clothes that line-dry quickly and hiking sandals. We want to make sure that everything is ready for you to put on trainings, and also that you are comfortable physically in this new environment. All of the beekeepers who attend trainings are excited to get this information and are very appreciative of the volunteer trainers.

This is not a Gotmead sponsored activity, but I have spoken at length with Agape, and this is a very cool chance to help developing areas learn meadmaking.