WINNERS of the national Grow It Yourself (GIY) home garden challenge were recently presented with their prizes by Sport and Community Development Minister Shamfa Cudjoe.
The competition which was geared to stimulate interest in home gardening within communities was divided in three categories – small, medium and hydroponics. Topping the categories were Ariana Persad, Zaria Greene, Brandon Murphy and Israiell Ali.
At the presentation on September 16, at the ministry's head office, Nicholas Tower, Port of Spain, Cudjoe stressed the importance of food security and growing fresh and healthy food, said a media release.
“I am deeply impressed and elated by the number of young persons who participated in this project. The response by the national community demonstrates that persons understand the plethora of benefits that can be derived from possessing their own kitchen garden,” Cudjoe said.
She said the project was meant “to prompt our citizens to embrace agriculture and to encourage families to utilise home gardening as a means of achieving home food security, getting the right nutrients on the plate and in our diet, right at your doorstep and kitchen window.”
The project will be extended throughout the year, and not just during the Best Village competition period, Cudjoe said.
She thanked the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries for its support. She said projects such as the GIY initiative can assist in getting all parts of government whether agriculture, education, innovation, trade and technology, into communities in making them more sustainable and improving the quality of life for all.
Winner of the medium category Ariana Persad said the competition was the impetus for her kitchen garden and she has continued with the garden because of how much she enjoys it.
Zaria Greene and Brandon Murphy, winners of the small and hydroponic categories also received their prizes. Israiell Ali, national winner of large, most innovative and most sustainable was unable to attend. Only the national first place winners participated in the ceremony due to public health restrictions.
The competition ran from June 8-July 30 with the Prime Minister’s Best Village Unit in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries.