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AGM 2014

The Charity's 2nd Annual General Meeting was held on June 19th 2015 at the Cafe Splendid in Jelsa.

The Agenda covered the presentation and acceptance of the Accounts for 2014, legally required changes to the Charity's Statute, the President's Report on the Charity's activities during 2014, and Reports on progress with the Animal Shelter and a new Project for Education in Environmental Issues relating to Rubbish Management.

PRESIDENT'S REPORT 

Internet information

The Eco Hvar website has continued to publish articles on topics relating to animal welfare, environmental protection and health, and to provide information about relevant events. The home page has registered over 30,000 hits, with many of the articles recording over 10,000 hits. The Eco Hvar Facebook Community Page has been updated almost daily with links to news items of interest linked to our core activities .

Responses to requests for help

The Charity has also responded to many queries, mainly regarding animal welfare, including: an injured bird in Stari Grad; an otter which need to be re-homed from the Split zoo, which was closing; several inquiries about abandoned cats, mostly on Hvar, but one from Brela on the mainland; and several requests for help with abandoned dogs. There was one request from an angry neighbour for help in dealing with noisy dogs in Stari Grad: we suggested ways the neighbour could help ease the situation and help the owner, but those dogs (a bitch and her six puppies) were subsequently poisoned. We advised the inquirers as best we could, while being unable to offer practical help in terms of homing the unwanted animals until such time as the animal shelter comes into being.

Protest against herbicide spraying in public places

In March 2014 Eco Hvar complained to the Jelsa Mayor following an incident when the glyphosate-based herbicide Ouragan was sprayed on the paths in the Jelsa park. We pointed out that herbicide spraying in public places was banned under a local council directive a few years ago. Eco Hvar’s letter was discussed at a meeting of Jelsa’s Ecology Committee (Odbor za ekologiju) on April 9th 2014. Eco Hvar President Vivian Grisogono attended, and was surprised to find that the committee, of which she was invited to be a member a few years ago, now consisted of just 4 or 5 members, one of whom believed that “the future of mankind depends on herbicides”, (euphemistically termed “plant protectors”). It seems the committee was reconstituted at some stage in the intervening years without reference to the previous members, and it was not thought necessary to invite Jelsa’s only environmental Charity to be part of it. The discussion in the committee meeting did not produce any positive conclusion. However, Eco Hvar did receive an assurance that the incident would not be repeated. But there was no assurance from the company employed by the Council to look after public spaces that they would dispose of their stock of herbicides.

Protest against public information about  the spraying of potentially hazardous insecticides along public streets

In March and April 2014, Eco Hvar exchanged several letters by email with the local Council regarding the spraying of poisons against insects, especially mosquitoes, in public places. Eco Hvar voiced concerns about the dangers of the substances being used, and the lack of public notice as to when and where the spraying would take place. Council policy regarding this spraying does not seem to have changed.

Reported sea pollution

in April 2014, Eco Hvar observed a boat being stripped of its paintwork while moored on the shore near Vrboska. Local Council officials claimed they did not have responsibility for sea pollution in such cases, so we were advised to write to the inspectorate in Split. We wrote asking who was responsible for protecting the marine environment and requested information about anti-pollution practices in official boatyards. We received a brief reply from Split advising us to write to the Environment Ministry in Zagreb, which we did. That elicited a telephone call from an official in Rijeka, who gave assurances that the laws on marine protection were in place, but who did not put anything into writing, despite being requested to do so.

Reported graffiti

In October 2014, Eco Hvar reported offensive graffiti in a public place to the local Council, and we were pleased that they were removed promptly.

Animal shelter progress

During 2014, planning for the animal shelter continued while the owner of the land earmarked for the shelter waited for official confirmation of the registration of ownership.

Support

Several people have added their names to Eco Hvar’s list of potential helpers and supporters during 2014. Eco Hvar does not have a formal membership or a membership fee. Supporters are added to the mailing list, and informed of significant activities, articles or events, mainly by email or text message.

ANIMAL SHELTER UPDATE

Lili Caratan, who is leading the Animal Shelter Project, was unable to attend the AGM at the last minute, but sent through the very pleasing news that the land which she has earmarked for the shelter has had ownership cleared in Court. The plans for the Shelter are being drawn up according to the statutory specifications, and the contract allocating the land to the Charity for the purposes of the Animal Shelter is being prepared. This is all very good news, and the Charity is deeply grateful to Lili. (This is the latest news, as at June 2015, so technically it belongs in next year's report, but we include it here for information.)

PROJECT FOR EDUCATION IN RUBBISH MANAGEMENT

The Project has been proposed by Jelsa's rubbish management company JELKOM as a joint venture. Different types of educational material will be prepared, aimed at a wide-ranging audience, including of course young children. The Charity intends to link with the local school, which is already designated as an 'Eco School', to motivate the children into taking care of their environment. There are funds available which can be applied for, and Eco Hvar is creating a possible educational programme for the Project.

The financial statement and the legal changes to the Statute are contained in the Croatian Report of the AGM