Students of the Deighton Griffith School have put their hands to the plough and today held an open day showcasing the fruits of their labour.
The showcase marked the culmination of a three-year project entitled the Deighton Griffith School PTA Agricultural Project hosted by the Science Department.
Funded by the Global Environment Facility’s (GEF) Small Grants Programme (SGP), the vision was for plots of land around the school to be transformed into an outdoor teaching laboratory.
Principal of Deighton Griffith School, Anthony Alleyne, touted the success of the initiative that has brought about a new perspective on agriculture for students. He explained, “This project has also seen a renewed interest in agriculture, with more students opting for the subject, more junior students being exposed to planting, growing and reaping, and the expansion of our curriculum to now include a stand alone CVQ offering in Crop production.”
National Coordinator of the GEF SGP David Bynoe lauded the emphasis placed on environmentally friendly practices, namely the use of organic fertilizers and the protection of agricultural structures.
He noted the troublesome unemployment rates for youth and the project was deemed an investment in young people who can apply their expertise to entrepreneurship. Bynoe told Barbados TODAY, “Agriculture is a very lucrative option career-wise because there are many careers in agriculture. From the agronomists to the food technologists to the botanists, it’s a whole wide range.” He added that for those interested in farming, there is expansive technology on the cutting edge of science for them to create their own employment.
The project aimed at improving soil quality, creating more green spaces and highlighting the best practices for sustainable organic agriculture. The school now has the capacity to store over 20,000 gallons of water through rain harvesting. The science students constructed a greenhouse and transformed its shade house which now facilitates plants like lettuce, tomato, and chives. Among the fruit trees planted are soursop, pomegranate, mango and sugar apple.