|Location||St. Pauls, St. Kitts|
|Amount Funded||EC $290,300.00|
The Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation (SIDF) funded a floriculture project at La Valley, St. Pauls, to provide training in horticultural practices and life skills to workers who were unemployed following the closure of the sugar industry. Floriculture, or flower farming, involves the cultivation of flowering and ornamental plants for gardens and floristry.
The SIDF provided funds totaling EC$ 290, 300.00 to the programme, which started in 2007, with 25 former SSMC labourers who worked in the nursery at La Valley cultivating flowers. In March 2009, the La Valley Floriculture Project was upgraded into the Agricultural Training Employment Project (ATEP), which brought the total beneficiaries of this programme to 125 persons.
Mary Jane Dickenson of St. Paul’s who participated in the floriculture project described it as “a wonderful experience” as she learned how to grow and care for flowers.
Since the closure of the floriculture project, several persons who have learned skills from the project have been able to get work at the Capisterre Farm and the nurseries at Kittitian Hill, while others have gone into private business. This acquisition and transferring of skill sets into non sugar agriculture is exactly what the post sugar diversification model is intended to achieve.