Old Har­bour De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee looks to cas­sava

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS - Ce­celia Camp­bell Liv­ingston Gleaner Writer ru­ral@glean­erjm.com

ON FRI­DAY, Oc­to­ber 14, the Old Har­bour De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee’s fo­cus will be on cas­sava as it cel­e­brates Cas­sava, Seafood and Cul­tural Fest at Port Esquivel Sports Com­plex in St Cather­ine.

Mon­ica Gar­dener, So­cial De­vel­op­ment Com­mis­sion (SDC) rep­re­sen­ta­tive for the area, said the event is de­signed to ac­knowl­edge to Ja­maica’s rich cul­ture.

“Cas­sava has, since the days of our abo­rig­ines – the Arawak In­di­ans – been one of the main sta­ples. This was then, and is now, en­joyed with the seafood from the bay,” she said.

Schools from the sur­round­ing ar­eas are ex­pected to be in­volved through the 4-H clubs as well as present with cul­tural items.

“With the fo­cus on what the event en­cap­su­lates, sev­eral en­ti­ties will be in­volved. Th­ese in­clude the schools, Ru­ral Agri­cul­tural De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity and the Ja­maica Agri­cul­ture So­ci­ety, 4-H clubs, the busi­ness sec­tor, farm­ers, fish­eries, and other stake­hold­ers. There will be com­pe­ti­tions, dis­plays, demon­stra­tions, trad­ing and per­for­mances, among other ac­tiv­i­ties,” shared Gar­dener.

THE AIM

Ac­cord­ing to Gar­dener, the aim of the event is to en­hance aware­ness of lo­cal eco­nomic ac­tiv­i­ties at the com­mu­nity level through the con­cept of a LED (lo­cal eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment) vil­lage and to cre­ate syn­er­gies be­tween LEIs (lo­cal eco­nomic ini­tia­tives) and ser­vice providers, both at the lo­cal and na­tional lev­els.

“Ad­di­tion­ally, the event aims to bring our farm­ers, fish­er­folk, culi­nar­i­ans and other re­source per­son­nel to­gether in an en­vi­ron­ment that will pro­vide in­for­ma­tion on health and well-be­ing; ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing; trad­ing; en­ter­tain­ment and other ser­vices, thereby ad­dress­ing is­sues such as un­em­ploy­ment, train­ing and ed­u­ca­tion, and crime that are cur­rently af­fect­ing this area and ad­join­ing ar­eas,” she said.

Gar­dener also told Ru­ral Xpress that she is hop­ing those at­tend­ing will be ex­posed to the ver­sa­til­ity of the cas­sava plant. With that in mind, she said a thrust will be made to pro­vide ed­u­ca­tion on the dif­fer­ent meth­ods of pro­duc­ing and pre­par­ing cas­sava.

“We also hope to fa­cil­i­tate im­prove­ment in the pro­duc­tion of cas­sava in the area and ad­join­ing ar­eas, as well as to ex­plore other means of mar­ket­ing cas­sava and other prod­ucts,” she said.

CAS­SAVA

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