By JADE RUSSELL
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources has invested over $37,000 to launch a national school farming initiative.
Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources Jomo Campbell said on Monday that 15 schools nationwide will receive farming materials, seedlings, and equipment through the programme, each receiving $2,500.
“We hope that this will help to educate students about agriculture, promote self-sustainability, and foster an overall connection to the environment,” he said at a press conference. “Because agriculture is an ageing profession in The Bahamas, school farming programmes are vital to the cause of our ministry as it promotes hands-on learning experiences for students, teaching them about food production and environmental stewardship.”
Mr Campbell noted the programme could also assist with the country’s food security by encouraging local food production that reduces reliance on imported goods.
Mr Campbell said more schools would be added to the programme in the future.
“We will be seeking in the very near future to add another 15 and perhaps more if the funding allows us to do so,” he said. “But as soon as we can accommodate the remainder of the schools, we definitely look forward for that. We want to grow this, and we want to make sure that this initiative isn’t Nassau-centric. We want to touch the Family Islands. We want to get everyone involved.”
David Cates, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources, encouraged students to grow their own plants as a business. He said agriculture is an industry that can be informative and lucrative.
Some schools in the programme include DW Davis Junior High, Anatol Rodgers High School, CV Bethel Senior High School, Central Eleuthera High School, Long Island High School, Arthur’s Town High School and Eight Mile Rock High School.