The Direct Aid Program (DAP) is a flexible small grants program through which the Australian Government supports development projects that contribute to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction.
The project entitle “Innovative Interventions to Strengthen BeFoundation Community Garden in
Barbuda” was launched at the Fisheries Complex in Codrington Barbuda on the 29th April,2022 with the technical activities lead by the Barbuda Council Works Department starting on the construction of the multipurpose room after the launch. Present at the launched were Lucrecia Birch- Policy/Program Officer Australian High Commission who gave brief remarks behalf on the High Commissioner who was engaged in another activity. IICA National Specialist Craig Thomas gave a brief background of the project as well as the role of IICA as the coordinating institution for the project. Bradbury Browne-CARDI Technician who highlighted the role that CARDI will play, as they will focus on the soil and water conservation strategies, also gave remarks. The project will focus on rehabilitating the community garden through upgrade strategies to the screen house, vegetable multi-purpose unit, and water harvesting conservation techniques. The group currently focused on producing vegetables for the community as well as donating surpluses to vulnerable persons.
Since Hurricane Irma Barbudans are still recovering from the aftershocks and through community efforts the Be Foundation was formed to focus on working to transform the lives through sustainable development programs. This project will be focused on innovative sustainable agriculture systems, which will contribute to the food security challenges, which currently exist in Barbuda. Newly appointed Chairman of the Barbuda Council Agriculture Division Mr. Fabian Jones who was present at the launched gave the assurance that the Barbuda Council will support all the activities under the project.
85% of food consumed in Barbuda is imported from Antigua via the United States of America (USA). The high cost to those imported commodities by the local supermarkets contributes to the high cost of living for Barbudans. This project will contribute to alleviating the high cost of vegetables as well as promoting a buy local theme.
The project is a community-based approach whereby it has been as inclusive as possible seeking support from the public and private sector. The majority of activities are to be carried out during the 1st and 2nd quarters of the year minimizing the environmental risk which is normally hurricanes disrupting the work.
Through technical institutions such as the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) and Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Barbuda Affairs (MoAFBA), regular consultation will be tabled to ensure that the agronomical risk when it comes to pest and diseases, which often times will affect the output from the garden.
A Barbudan overseas diaspora supports the Be Foundation who are considered members. The Barbudan Membership consists of: Direct Beneficiaries -Males 4 -Females 10 -Youth 4.
The project, which is a priority actions by the Ministry of Agriculture, which focus on inclusion of women and youth within the agricultural sector. This activity is a collaborative effort between IICA, CARDI, the Barbuda Council, Be Foundation and the MoAFBA.
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