Many of the high school students who are close to finishing their studies have a big question in their minds: What do I want to do after this? That was also the question asked by Aster Davis, a young man from Chateaubelair who suddenly found the perfect answer to that question in the most simple way.
During his last weeks of high school, Richmond Vale Academy selected ten homes in the community of Chateaubelair to develop organic gardens in their backyards. Also Aster's place was selected to develop this project, which aroused his curiosity and enthusiasm, because he saw a new way in which these gardens were built, called "permaculture". A way to create a synergy between housing, people, animals, land and the food produced.
As Aster was part of the team that carried out the project in his garden, he received an offer from the directors of Richmond Vale Academy to be part of their team and collaborate in the maintenance of the big organic garden on their site. This proposal was received with big pleasure by the future bachelor. As soon as he finished his studies he began to work in the garden of the academy, where he acquired more in-depth knowledge about the principles of permaculture, the use of organic waste to create a rich soil, how to make compost, agricultural production free of pesticides; and how these actions contribute to mitigate the impacts of climate change.
When Aster learned about the operation of the school, he made a decision that will change the direction of his life during the next years. He decided that he wants to be part of the TG (Teachers Group) at Richmond Vale Academy, to contribute to the school and his community. Not only by working in the garden, but also by sharing knowledge with local and foreign students, who are part of the different programs offered by the academy.
As a next step in order to accomplish his goals, Aster enrolled in the 6-month Climate Compliance program that started in March 2019. From there, he plans to start his career as a Teacher. Within a few years, teaching will be his contribution to society.
Hearing this story makes me feel proud and rejoiced. In Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the second poorest island nation in the Caribbean, young people who finish their studies have higher chances of being exposed to criminal activities and vices that limit their development as important players in society. But in this case, the construction of a small garden not only changed the yard of a humble home, it also changed the future of a young man who will be a role model to his family and his community.