Caribbean Lottery Gives an Extra Boost to Self-Sufficiency at St. Christopher Children’s Home
May 07, 2019 – Basseterre, St. Kitts: Soursop, lime, avocado, and sugar apple were among the delicious food trees that were planted on Thursday, April 25 at the St. Christopher Children’s Home in Basseterre with support from Caribbean Lottery. The students were eager to plant the trees, which will beautify the home as well as provide the much-needed nutrition that fresh local fruits have to offer.
The St. Christopher Children’s Home for orphaned and abandoned children was founded in 1950. It is the site of an After School Advantage (ASA) Centre, which opened in 2014, sponsored by Caribbean Lottery’s parent company IGT. The ASA Programme provides access to computers and digital tools to assist children who need to study and prepare homework in the after-school hours.
Business Development Associate at Caribbean Lottery in St. Kitts, Sabina Harrinarain said, “We are delighted that the children have the opportunity to enjoy the “greening” of their environment through this initiative. We also feel that this will help St. Christopher’s in a very practical way, strengthening their food security, as well as allowing the children to learn more about local fruits. It is a good example of ‘eat what we grow.”
Ms. Margaret Stevens, Administrator at St. Christopher Children’s Home, said the donation of trees came at the perfect time, as the Home has recently improved its self-sufficiency through the installation of a greenhouse and kitchen garden. “This is a big step toward sustainability,” she enthused, pointing out that fresh local produce is expensive and sometimes scarce. The new trees will help to reduce the home’s food bill. Ms. Stevens added that looking after the trees and crops “encourages nurturing and responsibility” in the children. “They are taking an interest in agriculture,” she said, adding that the students are excited about the project and often come to her with updates on the progress of their crops.
“It is more than just about nutrition,” Ms. Stevens stressed. “It is about the children’s mental well-being. They can learn all kinds of skills from caring for the trees.”