School aged children in Barbados now have an additional method by which to learn more about the country’s indigenous fruits and vegetables. With assistance from CIBC FirstCaribbean, two new posters designed for use in the classroom have been disseminated to the seventy-one public primary schools on the island. Principals of these schools were provided with copies of the posters at an event this afternoon.

From left to right, Ms. Patricia Lovell of Welches Primary School examines the Barbados Fruits Poster with Mrs. Debra King, Director Corporate Communications, CIBC FirstCaribbean (centre) and Mr. Erwin Greaves, Deputy Chief Education Officer (Planning and Development) - Min. of Edu. & HR Development.

Produced by Trinidadian Researcher/Writer Nasser Khan, with the assistance of research officers from the Barbados Ministry of Agriculture, Mssrs. Edme Henry and Steve Skeete, the posters will promote awareness among the country’s school children of the island’s indigenous fruits and vegetables.

The posters, which were produced with support from the bank’s charitable foundation, will also be introduced to the island’s public secondary schools next month.

Chairman of the CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank Foundation, Michael Mansoor, commented: “One of the mandates of our foundation is contribute to the education of the region’s young people. When this project was brought to our attention, we saw it as fulfilling two purposes: teaching our children about their indigenous fruits of their island, and making them aware of healthy options for inclusion in their diets. We hope that these posters will generate interest among our young people, and that the competitions we are organizing to promote them will lead them to learning even more about the various fruits – and in the case of the older ones, their nutritional value – and how they can be used.”

The posters will be distributed at the public schools island-wide, and to generate some additional interest, the bank is also sponsoring a series of competitions in both the primary and secondary schools, centered around the contents of the posters.

These competitions include: an art competition, entitled “My Favourite Fruit” for the Infants at primary schools; for the first to third form secondary school students, an essay competition based on the topic, “Why fruits and vegetables are an important part of our diet” and a culinary competition for the fourth to sixth-form students.

In each of the competitions, the fruits and vegetables to which the students refer must appear on the Barbados fruits and vegetables posters.

The competitions will be officially launched in the last week of September, with the judging and announcement of winners taking place at the end of November to coincide with the island’s national Independence celebrations.

The CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank Foundation was formed in 2003, less than a year after the bank itself was formed, as the governing body for the financial institution’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives. Through the foundation, one per cent of the bank’s profits are donated to important causes in the 17 Caribbean countries in which it has a presence – from education and health care to disaster relief- that contribute to the social enrichment of the Caribbean.

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