JIS News

Ebony Park Heart Academy in Clarendon emerged champions in the Public Speaking competition, held yesterday (July 30), at the 53rd staging of the annual Denbigh Agricultural and Industrial Show in the parish.
The opening day was designated ‘Youth in Agriculture Day’, and competitors from different schools and groups had to face the judges and speak on the topic: ‘Agriculture: A Viable Career Option’.
This competition was aimed at highlighting the achievements of young people in agriculture. There were also an agricultural quiz, essay, poster and food technology contests, and a school farm competition.
Programme Co-ordinator, Bridgette Williams told JIS News that the Youth in Agriculture Programme was established in 1990 and merged with the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) school agricultural programme in 1998, to formulate different strategies to encourage more young people to get involved in the sector.
Special emphasis is being placed on young persons from the primary to the tertiary level, for them to view agriculture as a business and to get involved on a professional basis.
For the public speaking competition, the competitors were judged on content, organisation, fluency, language, facts and timing. The teams were drawn from McGrath High and Port Antonio High Schools, Bethel Temple Apostolic 4-H Club, which had a number of teams, and the Ebony Park Heart Academy.
Miss Williams expressed pleasure at the increasing involvement of the schools in the competitions. “The support of the schools islandwide has been very good with excellent participation. I believe that they have all done exceptionally well at all the competitions,” she added.
She noted that approximately 32 teams competed, with the competitors drawn from high schools, tertiary institutions, community clubs, school leavers and primary schools.
The major sponsors for the ‘Youth in Agriculture Day’ were, Coconut Industry Board, Bank of Nova Scotia, Agro-Grace Limited, Capital and Credit Merchant Bank, National Commercial Bank, RBTT Bank, Jamaica Agricultural Development Foundation, United General Insurance Company, National Housing Trust and National Development Bank of Jamaica.