Sean Paul assists farmers

Sean Paul assists farmers

Sunday, September 27, 2020

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Romaine Hall from Jeffery Town, St Mary, will have an easier time cultivating his crops this season. In fact, the 25-year-old farmer's water woes have been eased with the official handover of a rainwater harvesting system from the foundation established by dancehall artiste Sean Paul along with Food For The Poor (FFP) Jamaica.

Hall is among farmers from each county who received a system for their quarter acre farm, sponsored by the Sean Paul Foundation (SPF) and facilitated by FFP Jamaica. The other recipients are Livingston and Wangel Warner of Albion Mountain in St Thomas and Maxine Gordon of Fern District in St James. Each system, valued at $315,000, includes a rainwater harvesting shed, a 1,000-gallon storage tank with a 55-gallon drum for the application of fertiliser and a gravity feed drip-irrigation system.

For Sean Paul, working with FFP gave him a sense of security.

“I decided to work with FFP Jamaica, because their programmes are geared towards the upliftment of our people and building our country. That's the same thing I am on,” he said. “They are doing amazing, transparent work. People can see the high standard of help that they have given over the years. I just wanted to partner with someone who knew what they were doing.”

Hall, the former Tacky High School student, has already been using his system.

“I have a quarter acre of tomatoes here. But I have corn, yam and have plans to plant string peas,” said Hall. “I am very thankful to the Sean Paul Foundation and Food For The Poor for what they have done for me. I am a godly person, so I will plant and God will do the rest.”

FFP Jamaica's Executive Director Kivette Silvera affirmed the reach of the project.

“I can categorically say these rainwater harvesting systems will have a significant impact on small farmers. When you think about it, every year you hear about drought in Jamaica and farmers saying that they have suffered losses. If it is not raining, how can they water the farm?” asked Silvera.

Sean Paul noted that although the drought forecasted this year has not materialised, there is definite need for the project.

“Farming is the backbone of the country, and small farmers have been doing their part. This year was projected to be a drought year, we have been blessed with rain, but I am glad that we did it,” he said. “This project will go a long way. To be self-sufficient is an important thing. We will try to do more for other small farmers across the island.”

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