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2014 World Food Day Celebrations at UWI focus theme “Family Farming: Feeding the world, caring for t

For Release Upon Receipt - November 21, 2014

St. Augustine


UWI Guild of Students play their part in creating awareness of Food Security 

ST. AUGUSTINE, Trinidad and Tobago – UWI St. Augustine staff, students and members of the wider community gathered for a candlelight vigil on November 6 to bring awareness about hunger, malnutrition and poverty for the 2014 commemoration of World Food Day. Themed “Family Farming: Feeding the world, caring for the earth,” the vigil took place in front of the Main Administration Building Car Park on the campus. 

Speaking at the vigil, Odessa Fortune, the Faculty of Food and Agriculture Representative of the Guild of Students noted, “For many of us food is guaranteed.  For many others, not in any far place, but right here on campus, food is a luxury…this is where we are, and this is where we must work.” Fortune outlined the recent initiatives of the Faculty in engaging students in a discussion about food, sharing information with students and staff on home gardening; how to grow food; how to manage growing crops with limited space; how to secure food for a household and lessen food expenditure. She added “It may sound and seem a bit narrow minded – telling people how to feed their own, but we are of the view that sharing information can allow for a culture change, however slowly it might occur.” She challenged those in attendance to carve out some time, engage their families and grow some food, adding that by simply by making wise food choices, visiting the local markets, growing our own food and supporting the local agriculture sector, we as a nation could lessen our food import bill.  

The candlelight vigil was hosted by The UWI in collaboration with FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation), IICA (Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture), Golden Grove Prison, UWI Agribusiness Society, UWI Agricultural Society. Dean of the Faculty of Food and Agriculture Dr.  Isaac Bekele opened the event and Campus Principal Clement Sankat delivered the welcome remarks.  

The 2014 theme Family Farming: “Feeding the world, caring for the earth” was chosen to raise the profile of family farming and smallholder farmers. It focuses world attention on the significant role of family farming in eradicating hunger and poverty, providing food security and nutrition, improving livelihoods, managing natural resources, protecting the environment, and achieving sustainable development, in particular in rural areas. The UN General Assembly has designated 2014 “International Year of Family Farming.” This is a strong signal that the international community recognizes the important contribution of family farmers to world food security. 

For further information on World Food Day 2014, log onto  


About The UWI

Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged, regional University with well over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with four campuses in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Open Campus. The UWI has faculty and students from more than 40 countries and collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation. Website: 

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)