Massy Stores donates towards environmental conservation
GENERAL MANAGER Joanna Justin (centre) with the recipients of Massy Stores $10,000 from left: representing Action Bequia were David Harper and Lucille Crozier, CEO and Chairperson respectively, CYEN, National Coordinator Clonesha Romeo (second from right) and CEO of the SVG Conservation Fund Vanburn Harry
Press Release
March 6, 2020

Massy Stores donates towards environmental conservation

THREE ORGANIZATIONS concerned with environmental conservation here, have each received EC$10,000 from Massy Stores.

The donations are part proceeds from the 25 cent charge on single use plastic bags which Massy introduced on August 3, 2018, with the objective of reducing plastics in the environment.

The recipients were Action Bequia, the St Vincent Conservation Fund and the Caribbean Youth Environment Network (CYEN) “That decision to reduce plastic waste is part of our organization’s broader commitment to find ways of operating more sustainably and becoming more environmentally conscious,” said General Manager Joanna Justin at the handing over ceremony on Monday at Massy’s Upper Bay Street location.

She added that in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), the company has noted a 67 per cent decrease in plastic bag usage across the three stores and this translates to approximately 480,000 single use plastic bags, which could have ended up in the landfill or in the environment.

When the plastic bag charge was implemented in 2018, Massy promised that part of that charge would go into an environmental fund to support environmental projects, groups and agencies throughout SVG. The fund became operational in February 2019.

“These funds will allow these entities to undertake a wide range of both marine and the land-based conservation and environmental related activities including sustainable alternative livelihoods,” Justin said.

Action Bequia and the St Vincent Conservation Fund were chosen because they are organizations with proper governance structures in place. Justin said that Massy also liked the fact that these entities have a Board of Directors, Annual General Meetings, audited financial statements and monitoring frameworks which allow them to put plans in place and deliver results.

CYEN was the winner of a competition held to award environmental groups, community organizations, environmental clubs, schools, charitable organizations

and other non profitable organizations.

Justin said it was Massy’s intention to award two winners, one from mainland and the other from the Grenadines but based on the proposals submitted, none of the projects from the Grenadines met the criteria to be awarded funding at this time. She however said that there will be more opportunities for the groups to get funding in the future Receiving the money on behalf of Action Bequia were David Harper and Lucille Crozier, CEO and Chairperson respectively. For CYEN, National Coordinator Clonesha Romeo was present, while CEO of the SVG Conservation Fund Vanburn Harry received on his organization’s behalf. Crozier explained that Action Bequia has set up a recycling system on the island to collect plastic bottles, cans, and glass bottles. They hand them over to AIR Inc., a recycling company located at Campden Park. Weekly, 11 tons of plastic bottles are removed from Bequia Crozier said. In 2019 and 2018, 650,000 and 400,000 plastic bottles were removed respectively.

The SVG Conservation Fund was set up to award grants for environmental projects with a focus on the conservation of biodiversity in SVG. Harry said his organization is in the process of finalizing the first set of grants and they have about $350,000 to use on projects that will enhance the environment, both marine and terrestrial.

Graphic artist Steven Veira was also announced as the winner of an environmental t shirt design competition held by Massy.