The objective of the Caribbean Family and Friends Engagement Initiative is to establish a mechanism that facilitates the contribution of the Caribbean diaspora to Caribbean development.  In addition to members of the Caribbean diaspora, the initiative encourages involvement by friends, well-wishers, and institutions that interact with the Caribbean and its peoples.

Thus, for the purpose of this initiative, the Caribbean diaspora includes the following entities:

  • Individuals in the Caribbean diaspora (persons born in the Caribbean and their descendants), as well as friends and well wishers.
  • Diaspora associations.
  • Companies owned by Caribbean-born persons or their descendants.
  • Corporations doing business in the Caribbean.

Scope of the Initiative
The initiative focuses on four areas of potential engagement, the support mechanisms for which will be established on a phased basis depending on the level of response from the diaspora.  The four areas of engagement are:

  1. Exchange of information and knowledge products.
  2. Engaging in conversations and initiatives on Caribbean development.
  3. Volunteerism, linked to specific initiatives.
  4. Financial contributions to the Foundation for Development Planning, Inc (FDPI).

Background
Small island developing states, and islands generally, face unique challenges that constrain development and create economic disadvantages.  These constraints include small size, limited resources, distance from main markets, and a high level of dependency on fragile ecological systems.  Caribbean countries are also extremely vulnerable to climate change and natural hazards.  These challenges and vulnerabilities are exacerbated by processes of globalization, enforced by geopolitical arrangements of the more developed countries.

These constraints make it difficult for Caribbean countries to establish and maintain coherent and long-term development processes.  To improve the quality of life of Caribbean peoples, structural changes are required to improve resilience in economic and ecological systems, strengthen institutional capabilities, and improve social protections.

Additionally, there is general agreement that the complex nature of sustainable development requires deliberate and cohesive collaboration between and among institutions in the public, private, and civic sectors.

This is the context within which the Foundation for Development Planning, Inc (FDPI) endeavors to function as an Institution of Place in the Caribbean, supporting collective action towards achievement of development goals.

This Caribbean Family and Friends Engagement Initiative seeks to enhance the potential for success by facilitating input to the collective action by a larger network of individuals and institutions.

You can Help to Build a Stronger Caribbean
There are several ways you can participate in the Caribbean Family and Friends Engagement Initiative:

  • Share information about this initiative with family, friends, and members of the Caribbean diaspora, by sending them the link to this page or a copy of the brochure for the initiative.
  • Tell us of the area in which you wish to contribute and your preferred form of participation.
  • Donate to the Foundation for Development Planning, Inc (FDPI).

For persons interested in engaging in conversations on Caribbean development, web-based discussion platforms currently managed by the FDPI and collaborating institutions include the FDPI’s LinkedIn Group and Under The Markets, a community forum for the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Donate
To donate, checks should be made payable to Foundation for Development Planning, Inc, with the memo notation ‘Diaspora Initiative’, and mailed to the FDPI at:
2369 Kronprindsens Gade, Suite 8-301
St. Thomas, VI 00802, USA

The FDPI is certified by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) public charity. As such, donations by U.S. institutions, citizens, and permanent residents are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.  To request a receipt for your donation, please include a completed donation form with your check.