The Caribbean Policy Development Centre (CPDC), Pro NGO and the European Union spearheaded a one day seminar on “Promoting Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Livelihoods among Eastern Caribbean Farmers” in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The CPDC aims to build civil society organizations partnership by engaging with people, governments and other relative partners to influence and improve the lives of those living in the Caribbean. Pro NGO is a German NGO whose aim is to improve the overall performance of civil societies. The seminar is mainly funded by the European Union.
In her opening remarks, WINFA’s Coordinator, Mrs. Kozel Peters-Fraser stated the seminar sought to inform local farmers and civil society representatives about climate smart agriculture and their corporate social responsibility. Fraser told farmers they have a part to play by paying attention to what they do because it has an impact on the society around them.
According to CPDC Project Administrator, Mr. Mark Brathwaite, this project got started in February 2017 and will run for 24 months. Brathwaite explained there are 4 phases to the project: preparation phase, capacity building, financing and enabling policy framework. The goal of the “Promoting Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Livelihoods among Eastern Caribbean Farmers” is to improve the productivity and security of farmers.
The CPDC, Brathwaite said, works mainly with small farmers to introduce methods and technology that will help them achieve their goals to support their families, country and beyond. He added that the technology that will be introduced will lower production and energy cost for farmers.
The Vice-Chairman of Pro NGO, Dr. Lothar Rieth, also spoke at the opening ceremony. Dr. Rieth stated that sponsoring events like these brings together people from different fields. The project follows the 17 sustainable development goals which St. Vincent and the Grenadines has adopted, Dr. Rieth explained.
These set of goals were adopted on September 25th, 2015 by various countries to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. Each of the 17 goals has special targets to be achieved over the next 15 years. He went on to say that this seminar will focus on goals 6, 7 and13 climate smart action working on renewable energy. Goal 6 focuses on clean water and sanitation, goal 7 on affordable and clean energy and goal 13 on climate action.
The one-day seminar was held at the Methodist Church Hall on October 30th, 2017. There were two previous seminars on this topic held in Grenada and Barbados, respectively.