Community receives trees from Jems
June 12, 2009
Community receives trees from Jems

In a two-part ceremony in Carapan on Friday, June 5, the Joyce Mapp Roberts household and the St. Clair Dacon Secondary School received the first of more than 2,000 fruit and calabash (bolee) trees to be planted throughout the Southeast sector of mainland St. Vincent by JEMS Progressive Community Organization in the coming months.{{more}} The launch of the JEMS Fruit-Tree-per-Household Campaign also commemorated and celebrated the globally designated 2009 World Environmental Day.

As part of the tree-planting ceremony at the Roberts home, SVG Community Development field supervisor and JEMS officer Roger Young spoke about the background of the project, the significance of the day, and the multiple partnerships that made the project possible.

Lanceford Weekes, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and the Environment, was the featured speaker for the event. Weekes spoke of the importance of the tree-planting campaign not only to the environment but to the health of the residents. Roberts and her grandson were on hand to assist Young and Weekes in the ceremonial planting of the first tree, a Valencia orange. JEMS coordinator Wadie Simon offered a prayer dedicating the tree.

Following the tree-planting ceremony at the Roberts home, the program moved to the St. Clair Dacon Secondary School. In her remarks to program attendees, school Principal Beverly-Ann Jacobs emphasized the school’s commitment to the environment and talked about JEMS’ involvement in the establishment of the school’s environmental club 13 years earlier. In the official tree-planting ceremony, St. Clair Dacon students Clifone Wyllie and Ephrasseh Benjamin planted a calabash (bolee) tree on the western corner of the school grounds.

Faculty member Rev. Cornelius Harry offered a prayer of dedication.

JEMS member and Stubbs resident Karen Joseph Nero served as mistress of ceremonies for both tree-planting ceremonies.

The Fruit-Tree-per-Household campaign is part of a JEMS food security, reforestation and livelihood development program. The campaign will give a fruit tree and a calabash (bolee) tree to every interested household within the Southeast sector of mainland St. Vincent. This project is part of JEMS Effort to a) enhance the health and nutritional intake of residents, b) reduce the impact of poverty by improving the livelihoods of residents and c) reduce the impact of Climate Change on a Small Island Developing State such as St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Communities included in the project include Stubbs, Enhams, Brighton, Carapan, McCarthy, Joseph Land, Junction, Victoria Village, Diamond, Belmont, Calder, Revierre, Glamorgan, Choppins and Bonhomme.

Residents of these communities interested in receiving trees for their property should call one of the following individuals to schedule planting: Wadie Simon, 432-8510 or Bernard Sayers, 528-2155.

The Tree-per-Household Campaign is part of the JEMS Green Heritage Project. The project is funded by a grant from the United Nations Development Programme Global Environment Facility (UNDP/GEF) Small Grants Programme operated out of UNDP Regional Office in Barbados, and supported by Karib Cable and the K Group of companies.