June 10, 2017:  Highlighting the importance of trees to our environment, Senator the Honourable Clarence Rambharat shared that ‘a new feature of the National Reforestation and Watershed Rehabilitation] Programme is that contractors in the Programme will be required to work in schools to tend to the trees on the compound’. Words that Senator Rambharat, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries said at the Launch of the Schools Tree Planting Programme on Monday 5th June, 2017 at the Belmont Secondary School.  The programme is a collaboration among the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries, the Ministry of Education and the Zoological Society of Trinidad and Tobago and will see one thousand (1,000) trees donated to schools throughout the Port of Spain area in celebration of World Environment Day, celebrated across the world on Monday 5th June, 2017.


As I have gone around the country, I have noticed, particularly in schools with green spaces and in recreation grounds and other public spaces, over the years, we have depleted the number of trees that we have; and [this is why] the Ministry has decided to launch this Schools Tree Planting Programme across schools in the country’.  The Agriculture, Land and Fisheries Minister in his Feature Address announced plans to plant some three hundred (300) poui trees in the City of Port of Spain by September 2017!


Commenting on the interaction he had with the three hundred plus students at the event, he said ‘Young people are very sensitive to the environment; [however] the education has to be across the board’.  The Form Four students assisted the Minister in planting both a yellow poui and Julie mango trees. 


Other speakers included Mr. Ben De La Rosa, Representative, Zoological Society of Trinidad and Tobago; Ms. Lisa Sammy Pierre, Principal (Ag.), Belmont Secondary School; and Ms. Lu-Ann Frank Felix, Vice Principal (Ag.), Belmont Secondary School. 


In attendance were Senator Avinash Singh, Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries; Mrs. Nadra Gyan, Chairman, EMA; Ms. Petal Ram, Director – Horticultural Services Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries; among others.