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The BBKA has taken part in the International Meeting of Young Beekeepers (IMYB) almost from it's inception and this year the 9th annual International Meeting of Young Beekeepers will take place in Nérac, near Bordeaux in France from July 2-6th 2018. This will be a great opportunity to have young beekeepers gather together from all continents to promote beekeeping among young people, to exchange on current topics and to discover the French country and culture. For 2018, the event will expand to include 30 teams from all over the World. The Event As in former years, the event will consist of a mixture of cultural presentations and competitions at two levels – international teams made up of candidates from different countries working together as well as an individual award for the best three candidates from any country displaying the best aptitude, attitude and general beekeeping skills. As before, the competition will be composed of workshops (bee-handling, equipment identification, written tests…) but there will also be some new events yet to be announced! Participants Each country’s team must be composed of three young beekeepers who must be aged between 12 and 16 years old on January 1st 2018 (their date of birth should not be before 01/01/2002). Each team has to be accompanied by at least one (maximum two) accompanying adults who will be responsible for their group during the visit. The candidates must be aware that parents/guardians will not be present at the event and must be comfortable staying away from home for the duration of the event. Reception and accommodation Nérac is a little town situated in the South-West of France right in the middle between Bordeaux and Toulouse. This little town is famous for its green park, its castle (owned by King Henry the 4th of France), its countryside, and its way of living with good food, wines and Armagnac (adults only!). The event will take place in the Agricultural Secondary School A. FALLIERES where all participants and accompanying adults will be welcomed and accommodated during the meeting. We will probably meet up on Sunday the 1st July at a hotel near the departing airport or London St Pancreas if we are taking the train. We may also have an overnight stay in the UK on the way back depending on where candidates live and our travel schedule. We will either fly into Toulouse or Bordeaux airports, or take the Eurostar/TGV to Agen station - either way, there will be a bus to collect us on arrival and take us to the event. Note: All potential participants MUST have a valid passport that is valid until at least Jan 2019 The Programme The event will start with a sport meeting on the campus at 4pm on Monday July 2nd 2018 for the people already arrived. This time will be useful for Young Beekeepers to meet the other international participants which will be followed, at 7pm by the opening ceremony. During the ceremony, international teams will be officially presented and the schedule will be unveiled. Finally, a dinner will close the evening in the refectory and the remainder of the evening will be available for team building and for old friends to meet up with new friends so that IMYB 2018 becomes a social event and not just a competition. On Tuesday July 3rd, the competition will take place for the Young Beekeepers while accompanying adults will attend conferences and visit historic and cultural places. Some local aspects of the social life in South-West France will also be proposed in the evening to adults and young people. On Wednesday, July 4th we will discover some of the most beautiful, interesting and cultural sides of the South-West of France. The Competition will go on on Thursday July 5th for the youngsters in the morning and some pleasant time in the afternoon; visits and exchange with local beekeepers for the adults. On the evening the participating teams will be invited to make a presentation of some aspects of the cultural, social aspects of their country. Having so many teams invited means that we cannot make a presentation of all countries individually; this is the reason each country will present aspects of England through clothes, photos, food on a dedicated stands designed and prepared by the team beforehand. The closing ceremony will take place during which awards for individual and team participation will be given. To close the meeting on Friday 6th we will have breakfast together before the departure to the railway station or airports. Costs There are no costs for any participants as these will be covered by the BBKA. Selection Process The selection day for the English BBKA team will take place at the BBKA HQ in Stoneleigh on Saturday the 24th March at 10:00am. Candidates will take part in various team and solo exercises including various practical beekeeping tasks, basic botany, anatomy and a short written test. We will announce the three candidates and a reserve on the day. Future Candidates We welcome those potential candidates aged 10 and upwards for future IMYB events who would like to learn more. Please come along to find out more about the event and the selection process on the 24th March 2018 so that you can decide for yourselves if you would like to put yourself forward as a candidate for the 2019 IMYB and beyond! More Information Contact Simon Cavill on [email protected] for more information.