A select number of residents of the Seventh Electoral District who are underemployed or unemployed will be given a plot of land to farm in an effort to promote agriculture, while earning revenue as part of a Community Garden Programme.
A press release issued yesterday, May 19, said the programme will involve a cohort of six to 10 apprentices who will learn the fundamentals of farming and entrepreneurship by entrepreneur and Deputy Chief Agricultural Officer Arona Fahie
“The apprentices will have access to a small lot (232 x 78 ft) in Long Look, where they will learn how to grow, harvest and market their produce,” the release said.
It added: “Apprentices must be residents of District 7 who are either unemployed or underemployed. The pilot will take place for a period of three (3) months in the first instance. Successful participants will be granted access to a plot of farmland in Paraquita Bay to further their entrepreneurial endeavours.”
Commenting on the initiative, Representative for the Seventh District, Dr. Natalio Wheatley, who is also the Deputy Premier and Minister for Agriculture, said, “We are looking to use this programme as a pilot to increase access to food, improve eating habits and general well-being, and generate a greater sense of community, from seed to table.”
He continued: “In addition to the health and cultural benefits of a community garden, the programme will stimulate economic activity, create much-needed entrepreneurship opportunities for Long Look residents, and the wider Virgin Islands community.”
Mrs. Roxane Toussaint will be managing the programme, and once the apprentices have been selected, there will be a ceremony to launch the initiative, and it be broadcasted live on social media.