Their idea to showcase the coconut palm as a versatile tree crop has gained the Bishop Martin High School in Belize the top prize in a regional science and technology competition.
The school’s project, Coconuts4Life, Eco Park beat 11 other schools and won them US$5 000 at the challenge finals of the Regional Sagicor Visionaries’ Challenge at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre yesterday.
The Bishop Martin students used the coconut tree and its fruits for food, shade, recreation and ornamental use.
And that’s not all. The school plans to grow a coconut orchard and ecological park on its grounds to produce coconut water, coconut material or snacks, ornaments and jewellery as well as offer students a place to play and relax.
The idea for the project grew out of the fact that nine out of ten students buy flavoured bottled drinks over water and the absence of a plastic recycling facility.
The Sagicor Challenge has a focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and the projects judged were the national winners from the 12 participating countries.
Second place went to Jamaica’s Wolmer’s Boys School for their project Electro-light, Making Your Electricity Bill Lighter. They won US$3 000, while third was Naparima Girls College in Trinidad and Tobago whose project So What Is The Farmer In Your Neighbourhood, gained them US$1 000.
Sagicor partnered with the Caribbean Science Foundation and the Caribbean Examinations Council in organizing the inaugural challenge. (LK)