The Rastafarian Community have been significantly affected by Hurricane
Ivan's passage over the island, as much damage has been done to the agricultural
project, " Carinuts".
(Photographs to be added shortly, wet cloudy weather has hampered out
Touring the 30-plus acre site of an organic enterprise that supplies
fresh fruit and vegetables to the wider community, we were struck by the
shredded plants and rotting husks of watermelon, laying forlornly among
Ras Engine, head of the cooperative effort, indicated his disappointment
at the sight of such ruin desecrating beautiful arable land. He said this
is virgin soil, rich and needs no fertiliser, no manure, yet the storm
has decimated the crops and we can not supply the organic food our nation
needs now, more than ever.
Pointing to the fruit and the weeds, he spoke of the harvest usually
available in September, and how even after their quota to the marketing
board was filled there was more than enough for the community. He lamented
that "... a man unable to feed himself, cannot be independent..."
and spoke of his subsistence efforts to feed his own youth and a few passers-by.
He was concerned that government was going to help him plow the large
plot, as their tractor had broken down and the parts, which needed machining,
were now in Grenada. Due to the power cuts, this job could not be completed
and the fields have subsequently lain fallow, since before the storm.
The damage wrought by Hurricane Ivan will delay the plowing even further,
Ras Engine spoke at length of the potential for supplementing the Schools
Feeding Programme, and indicated that students could come and learn
the agro processes as an outreach from his community.