A young farmers’ group, which will afford greater opportunities for its members, was launched in Penville on the weekend.
Oscar George, President of The Young Farmers’ Group of Penville, said that the group, initiated by Prime Minister, and Parliamentary Representative for Penville, Roosevelt Skerrit, will allow farmers to take advantage of many opportunities.
“It now allows us, young farmers, to take advantage of the numerous opportunities available to us. These advantages include the ease of sourcing finances, sourcing markets, and just receiving more recognition as a formal body,” he stated at the official launching ceremony. “This Farmers’ Group is a non-profit organization geared primarily at promoting the development of agricultural production and marketing in Penville.”
He explained that as a group, the young farmers will also be able to make better use of their resources.
“Having a unified, young, vibrant group of farmers can translate into optimum use of available land, employment, regular incomes, and improvement of the standard of living,” George stated.
An executive committee has been selected, to govern the affairs of the group, and to ensure the continued commitment of its members. A final assessment was also conducted to gage members’ level of commitment.
The Young Farmers’ Group has officially met with the Dominica Export and Import Agency (DEXIA), which promised assistance as part of its Production Support Program, as long as certain criteria are met by the group.
George promised that the group would make a positive impact on the community, while seizing any opportunities presented.
“Today, I can assure you that the Young Farmers’ Group of Penville is poised to take advantage of any opportunity that may present itself. We spare no effort in welcoming this initiative, and look forward to making positive strides to enhance our community,” he noted.
Meantime, Skerrit commended the group members for their initiative.
“Let me first of all, commend the young people of Penville for taking up the challenge of organizing yourself… The challenge to you was to organize yourself into a group so that we could work together in getting opportunities for yourself and also capitalizing on the existing opportunities you have created for yourself,” he said.
Skerrit stated that agriculture is an important investment for the country, as it contributes to greater economic development.
“For us in the government, and for me personally, agriculture is critically important to the welfare of Dominica… We have, as a country, to continue investing in agriculture,” he noted. “Food security is important. We have to be able to feed ourselves, and to feed the nation, and to also export to serve for foreign exchange that will create greater economic activity in our country.”
$100,000 were presented to the group by Skerrit. It was part of an overall $250,000 commitment made to the group.