Update on March 26, 2013
My most recent trip to Jamaica was informative and rewarding. I
visited the two school sites that will benefit from Mind Gardens' efforts, the
National Baptist Primary School and Tivoli Gardens High, and was able to look
around the sites where these community gardens will be developed.
I visited National Baptist Primary School on their weekly "Fruit Day", a set
day of the week where every student is encouraged to bring a piece of fruit to
eat at meal time. "Fruit Day" is an effort to encourage parents to think
about nutritious foods for their children and introduce a healthy diet at a
young age. However, such efforts can only go so far and unfortunately
many families are not able to send their children to school daily, let alone
with a piece of fresh fruit. It was sad for me to witness the young
children drinking artificial, sugar-loaded sodas and juice boxes rather than
the milk or fresh fruit juice many of us enjoyed at school.
The following day I visited Tivoli Gardens High and toured the area where
our Teaching Garden will be. During their lunchtime the school's
Principal rounded up some students and took everyone out to the open ﬁeld where
we took multiple photos of the students and site while a soccer game took place
on the other side of the field.
Later that day I went to our community garden site in Trench Town where
Greenhouse construction will begin this month. I was educated by our
grower on the technical aspects of beginning a community garden, such as the
land assessment process that ensures the land is safe and appropriate before
any building begins. This opened my eyes to the extensive work required
to develop a project like this - it's definitely not as quick and simple as some
may think! The grower went on to describe the growing process and
provided me with a timeline for the actual production of fresh
vegetables. I was inspired by his expansive knowledge and experience with
all aspects of the project.
I look forward to returning to Jamaica in the Spring to continue my
education and further participate in helping these communities - Tarik Ross.
US Project Coordinator, Mind Gardens.
Thank you for your continued support of Mind Gardens and our mission. Please
share the pledge (http://www.causes.com/mindgardens?open_inviter=true) with friends and family