In a major milestone for environmental education and sustainable agriculture in the Virgin Islands, Green VI, through the BVI SMART Schools Project has successfully established vibrant gardens at several schools across the Virgin Islands.

The project is funded through an over €1.3 million allocation from the European Union’s Resilience, Sustainable Energy, and Marine Biodiversity (RESEMBID) Programme.

Fourteen public schools are targeted: Alexandrina Maduro Primary, Bregado Flax Primary, Bregado Flax Secondary, Claudia Creque Primary, Ebenezer Thomas Primary, Elmore Stoutt Secondary, Enid Scatliffe Pre-primary, Enis Adams Primary, Francis Lettsome Primary, Ivan Dawson Primary, Joyce Samuel Primary, Leonora Delville Primary, Robinson O’Neal Primary, and Willard Wheatley Primary

“Through this project, we’ve grown relationships and gardens that cultivate positivity, beauty, connection, food security and a new kind of classroom,” it states on the Green VI Website “We’re proud to have had our 44 lesson plans adopted into the BVI National Curriculum.”

From sowing seeds to harvesting fresh produce, the school gardens serve as immersive outdoor classrooms where students can get their hands dirty while absorbing lessons on topics like recycling, sustainability, conservation, and agriculture. 

This past week, students had the opportunity to showcase their hands-on learning experiences from the gardens. At Ebenezer Thomas Primary, fifth grade students shared their gardening activities with Hon. Sharie de Castro, Minister for Education, Youth Affairs and Sports. Together with Green VI representatives, they also participated in a ceremonial tree planting to observe Earth Day.

Minister de Castro highlighted the importance of the initiative and spent the visit speaking to students about the value of increasing the local supply of food in the Territory through sustainable agriculture.