JIS News

The revived School Garden Programme, administered by the Jamaica 4-H Clubs, is moving apace in the parish of St. Elizabeth.
This programme, which was relaunched on October 10 by Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture, J. C. Hutchinson, is seeking to establish and restore some 23 school gardens in each parish, in one year.
Co-ordinator for the programme in Westmoreland and St. Elizabeth, Richard Solomon, told JIS News, that school administrators and community members in St. Elizabeth have embraced the programme, and are providing much support.
“The interest displayed by the schools is extremely great. The administrative staff is on board, and persons in a number of communities have come out to give their time in preparing the soil and planting crops,” Mr. Solomon informed.
He appealed to persons in every community to support the initiative and to protect the schools and the gardens. “Remember, that the school property must be respected, it is an institution that fosters positive development for our children, and the community and nation building. The school garden is to assist the students, and to help the schools meet their budget, so when persons steal the plants, or vandalise the school, not only is the project affected, but the wider community,” he emphasised.
Meanwhile, the Parish Development Officer with the 4-H Clubs, Bridgette Powell, informed that several schools have expressed a desire to see the project established much quicker in the schools.
“While we welcome their interest to be on board, we have to ensure that everything, such as fencing for the schools, is in place before we commence the cultivation,” she pointed out.
Miss Powell said that since the re-implementation of the school garden programme, she has seen a renewed interest in 4-H activities, where schools are re-registering their clubs with the organisation.

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