ProTouch Communications LLC has donated 20 packets of vegetable and seasoning plant seeds to the Virgin Islands Department of Education’s Division of Agriculture, St. Croix District.
The seeds were presented to Velda Hendricks, the district’s director of agriculture, on Sept. 15 at ProTouch’s offices in Sion Farm. Hendricks expressed her gratitude during a brief ceremony.
“I just want to officially say thank you, [Bryan] Butler and [Tracy] Butler,” she began, “without the collaboration and without meeting you and Karen Jones, I know it would not have been possible.”
The relationship between Hendricks and ProTouch Communications began in July when Hendricks met with Butler and Jones to inform them of her work. Following the meeting, the company made a financial donation and the offer to secure seeds to help Hendricks meet her goal of re-establishing school-based gardens and farms at St. Croix’s public schools.
Butler said the donation of seeds was made possible through the efforts of his wife and business partner, Tracy, who contacted off-island seed vendors.
“This was Tracy writing some letters, sending some emails and following up,” he said.
Tracy Butler’s efforts paid off with Johnny Selected Seeds, Seed Savers Exchange and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds donating seeds to restart St. Croix’s school-based gardening and farming programs.
Bryan Butler pointed out that the funds his company donated to the district’s agriculture program was a separate gift from the donated seeds.
The district’s agriculture program lost most of its supplies in Hurricane Maria last September. ProTouch’s monetary donation will go toward purchasing supplies and tools needed to keep school gardens and farms operational and sustainable.
Hendricks is seeking volunteers and additional businesses to help support the district’s agriculture program.
For more information, contact the Office of Public Relations at 774-0100, ext. 8136.