By Jennifer Browning
Earth Institute Director Jeffrey Sachs and Pedro Sanchez, Director of Tropical Agriculture at the Earth Institute, joined The Green Family Foundation and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) delegation during a visit to Marmont. The visit also included a look at Project Medishare’s growing community health program along with the recently integrated agriculture program between Thomonde and Marmont.
After a short coffee break at Project Medishare’s Headquarters in Thomonde, visitors walked to view the demonstration farm as well as the Akamil Plant which is due for completion in December.
The tour continued with a journey half way up Morne Sourit to get a panoramic perspective of Marmont. Visitors were able to gain a birds-eye view of Marmont and the surrounding areas. Here, Project Medishare’s lead agronomist from the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Florence Sergile described the potential and challenges the environment represented. Sergile pointed out that while evident deforestation was present up on the mountain overlooking Marmont, that farmers and other villagers had protected the trees around Marmont as well as Thomonde.
Before visiting the clinic and maternal health center in Marmont, the convoy climbed down Morne Sourit, to visit a potential natural irrigation system in Cour Cadichon. Local farmers gathered to speak to Sanchez and Sachs about the importance of their land and how they wished to improve their farming practices.
For their final stop before returning to Thomonde, the group toured Project Medishare’s clinic and the construction site of the Maternal Health Center in Marmont. After lunch back at Project Medishare’s headquarters, Sachs and Sanchez spoke to Project Medishare staff and the delegation expressing positive feedback regarding the programs already established by Project Medishare.