Thu | Apr 26, 2018

SOS Children's Village grateful for new food garden

Published:Monday | March 19, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Unicomer volunteer Donna Rose is assisted by a youngster from the SOS Children's Village in Stony Hill, St Andrew, in planting a palm tree on Saturday.
These children from the SOS Village watch as Unicomer volunteers get ready to plant trees on Saturday.
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Having their food garden destroyed by heavy rains last year, residents at the SOS Children's Village in Stony Hill, St Andrew, were overjoyed when members of Unicomer Jamaica gathered on Saturday to create a new garden.

Marcia Brown, village director, said the gesture signalled that people still care and are willing to do their part to assist the less fortunate.

"The Courts family is actually here trying to help us to sustain ourselves by helping us to put together a vegetable garden. We are so appreciative and thankful, because we

don't have to worry about purchasing stuff at the market. This will alleviate some of the cost because food products are very expensive. For us, this is a great help," she said.

"Our children were very involved in the process. It actually shows them some sense of responsibility and also how to be appreciative of what is given to them. Not many persons are in a position to give, and so when people take the time to give back, they should understand the value of being appreciative."

 ... There's value in giving back

Karen Royal, corporate social responsibility coordinator at Unicomer, noted that despite their long history with the home, giving back never become a ritual.

"For us at Unicomer, we are heavily involved in giving back. It is embedded in us and we have a long history with SOS. They had a food garden that was somewhat destroyed by the heavy rains last year. We thought this (new garden) would do a lot to sustain them in terms of food that they need at home. It won't be everything they need, but at least it will take away some of the expenses of going to the market and all of that. The idea was to help them get that start," she said.

In highlighting the value of giving back, she said that corporate Jamaica has been stepping up to the plate more often over the years, and that more Jamaicans are also reaching out to help others. She said, however, that still more persons need to be aware of the importance of giving back.

"We can't get complacent. More still needs to be done and not just by companies, but by individuals. The truth is, we don't need a big fanfare to volunteer. We can do it ourselves. Visit a home, comb [someone's] hair, bathe a child. Just give of your time," she said.