Newly elected Rotary president targets the environment
Newly installed Rotary Club of Montego Bay president Franz Wiggan (left) presents a token of appreciation to Immediate Past president Amber Gayle-Grandison during the installation ceremony held at the Grand-A-View Hotel in Montego Bay on Saturday.

MONTEGO BAY, St James - Newly elected president of the Rotary Club of Montego Bay, Franz Wiggan, says he plans to focus on the environment during his year-long tenure in office.

He was speaking at the installation ceremony on Saturday at the Grand-A-View Hotel in Montego Bay, where he was given the mandate to lead the club for the 2022-2023 period.

During his remarks, Wiggan disclosed that in September, the club will kick-start a series of educational programmes targeting the youth, aimed at increasing their awareness about the impact their actions could have on the environment.

"In September, we will engage basic schools and provide them with reading material, not of regular stories but age appropriate material that will help them to understand the influence they can have at that age on the environment," Wiggan remarked.

He further explained that the club will be seeking to plant a variety of trees, including breadfruit, which he believes can serve "a number of much-needed purposes".

"We also will be planting some trees in these schools for multipurpose — to provide shade, helps to keep the ground together and also consumes carbon dioxide — and also to provide fruits. The project will also provide breadfruit trees which we use in common households... so for these schools, it will be a shade, environment in terms of carbon dioxide and also provide fruits," he further explained.

Despite the initial focus on the school, the newly elected president was keen to indicate that the project is expected to have wider benefits for the communities in which the targeted schools are located.

"We will expand that project into the communities because breadfruit can not only be used in the fry or bake stages, but to make breadfruit flour which is geared to possibly replace the multi-billion-dollar import that we have of wheat flour. It's in high demand... so we want to get into educating individuals that this is an economic opportunity for you to be able to engage and have, because it is a growing industry," he stated.

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