Maria’s Blog: Day 9 – Reflections on the Visit to Uitvlugt Sugar Estate

The classroom is so hot, yet I see people wearing sweaters and long sleeved t-shirts.  The weather is unlike yesterday’s wet and rainy weather.

The rain certainly did ease up as we got closer to the Uitvlugt Sugar Estate.  The estate staff was extremely cordial and friendly.  They were very receptive, polite and answered any questions we had. We were given a presentation on the estate and its goals for 2017-2020.  The ride around the estate in the bright, red truck was bumpy and a bit uncomfortable.  There were also many, many bugs.

In the fields, it was sugarcane as far as the eye could see.  It was an endless expanse of green – like a sea of purplish-yellow stalks and swaying green leaves.  The estate was considerably larger than I thought it would have been.  At the end of the trip I was utterly exhausted, but satisfied with the trip.  I was also happy for the delicious souvenir that we were allowed to have.

Selfie with my friends at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate
Selfie with my friends at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate

Its time for me to put the pen down now.  I still can’t believe that this is the second-to-last day of camp!  Where did the time go?  Anyways, I’ve got to go now as I’ve already said enough.

All the love,

Mar 

PS: Here are some reflections on the Uitvlugt trip from my fellow campers

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Crossing the Demerara Harbour Bridge on the way to Uitvlugt Sugar Estate

“The trip was awesome!  That was my first time crossing the Demerara Harbour Bridge to go to Essequibo.” TT

Uitvlugt/Leonora Sugar Estate
Uitvlugt/Leonora Sugar Estate

After this entire experience I have learned how STEM plays a crucial role in manufacturing sugar. The science is used for planting and taking care of the sugar, technology and engineering are used for operating and maintaining  the machines manually.  Finally the mathematics is used for statistics, profit and loss, measurement (metric system)” SG

“The trip that we had after lunch in the truck was bumpy, however I found adventure in this as it really felt like I was experiencing what the cane farmers felt while traveling into the fields.” ZH

Bus used by sugarcane workers for transport to and from cane fields
QCSMI campers on the bus used to transport sugarcane workers to and from the cane fields
Wow! This is fun! (Crystal Craig)
Wow! This is fun! (Crystal Craig)

“The part of the trip that I found the most fun was when we had to board one of the trucks that carries workers, and go into the backdam.  We went far and stopped for a while.  Me and some of my friends had a race and went pretty far.  When we went back to the estate we got to play games and relax for a while.  I played darts and got a bullseye!”  RS

Roxanna Singh scores a BULLSEYE at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate
Roxanna Singh scores a BULLSEYE at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate

“Seeing all the cane fields as far as the eye can see was breathtaking! I didn’t know Guyana had all this cane let alone Uitvlugt Estate.  All in all it was a day I would not forget in my entire life.” EH

DSC_4422“We drove down into the plantation. There was sugarcane everywhere. We came to a halt leading to more sugarcane beds. We took pictures. It was a thrilling experience!” BS

The walk through the cane fields got my shoes dirty, but the view was totally worth it.” SN

QCSMI Girls
QCSMI Girls at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate

The best part of our field trip was when we actually visited the sugar plantations. I got my clothes and shoes dirty but it was worth it. There were so many acres of land with sugar that it was unbelievable.” SG

“We had a chance to visit the Uitvlugt Sugar Estate owned by GUYSUCO.  On arrival at the estate we were given a presentation by the estate manager about where the estate is and where they would like to be by 2020.  It was clearly shown that mathematics is needed in every aspect of sugar production.” CH

“Yesterday’s trip to Uitvlugt Estate was amazing. Once we were there, we sat through a conference. The estate manager’s speech and information given about the estate, it’s plans for expansion, and its structure was interesting. Their plans and how they’re going about improving their cultivation methods, as well as economic plans, was informative. I learned a lot about the estate and the different positions offered. [The Estate Manager] really provided insight into how Guysuco operates as well as future plans for betterment of the industry.” CC

Crystal Craig at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate presentation
Crystal Craig at Uitvlugt Sugar Estate presentation

“As a result of the estate manager’s talk, I became interested in the sugar industry, because I find it very fascinating and captivating. If I could’ve I would’ve sat in that room and listened to him speak about sugar all morning…” CC

“The presenter mentioned that of the 8 sugar Estates in Guyana, only three including the one at Uitvlugt will remain in operation after December 31, 2017. He also said that he hopes to improve the performance at Uitvlugt within three years.” BS

IMG_1215I am beginning to feel sad because the camp is coming to an end and I will have to spend the rest of my vacation lonely because I am an ‘only child’ and I have nothing else to do.”  AR

Reflection from our camp Counselor Shannon Woodroffe

I believe that yesterday’s field trip was the most eventful and detailed for our math camp.  For and Applied Maths project in lower sixth, I had analysed statistically the trend in sugar production over a recent 10 year period, and was appalled to see the declining numbers relevant to one of Guyana’s tow main crops.  As such I was intrigued to hear from the officials at GUYSUCO’s estates, the crisis and the solution from their perspective.

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Walking amongst the sugarcane in the nursery, and in the field and traveling in a vehicle used by sugar workers added to the experience.  And although walking in the nursery may not have been the most comfortable experience at the time, I am pleased to have added yesterday’s events to my life.

Relaxing and having fun at Uitvlugt

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