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Community Last Updated: Nov 9, 2017 - 11:56:21 AM

Save The Bays Plants 15 Neem Trees on GB Humane Society Grounds
By Diane Philips & Associates
Nov 9, 2017 - 10:43:41 AM

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Save The Bays chairman Joe Darville and volunteers till the earth to plant neem trees to provide shade for the increasing number of domestic animals being taken to the Grand Bahama Humane Society.

Active environmental advocacy and education group Save The Bays took its greener is better message to a different kind of platform recently, far from the halls of government and the courts right to the Grand Bahama Humane Society.

The organization planted 15 neem trees on Humane Society grounds.

“Grand Bahama has had so many challenges with a slow economy and one storm after another hitting the island including most recently Hurricane Irma,” said Save The Bays Chairman Joe Darville. “The result has been that many who are displaced or out of work have turned to the Grand Bahama Humane Society, giving up their pets because they simply could not afford to feed and care for them. The Humane Society grounds are large, but there is little shade and with the larger than usual numbers of four-legged residents, staff and volunteers were in a quandary.”

Save The Bays took a chunk of the budget usually reserved for Earth Day when members plant trees on school grounds on various islands and purchased 15 trees from Abaco Neem. They were shipped to Freeport and volunteers from Save The Bays planted them. Grand Bahama Humane Society Executive Director Tip Burrows said they were thrilled. 

Cahlin Bannister, a student at Bishop Michael Eldon School, Freeport, waters a tree during the planting of 15 neem trees at the Grand Bahama Humane Society. The trees were imported from Abaco Neem farms.

“We are really thrilled about this wonderful and timely donation,” said Ms. Burrows. “In the summer it gets so hot out in the dog play area, and we want them out of their kennels. We are looking forward to the trees flourishing and providing a canopy of shade for the next few years, maybe even by this coming summer.”

Darville said the trees were specifically selected for their properties and to support local growers.

“Neem is called Nature’s Pharmacy,” said Darville. “The trees contain all sorts of medicinal properties. They also keep mosquitoes at bay and most importantly for all the Spots and Fidos in the care of the Humane Society, they provide shade.”

Launched in 2013, Save The Bays has more than 500 members and over 20,000 Likes on Facebook. The environmental protection aspect of its legal work is unprecedented in The Bahamas and its education and advocacy arms engage in activities including beach clean-ups, water monitoring, preservation of marine resources, training of Youth Environmental Ambassadors, Camp Eco-Explorer, talks on climate change and supporting efforts to teach every young person in The Bahamas how to swim. Save The Bays supporters say they will not rest until a comprehensive Environmental Protection Act is law.

Save The Bays volunteers plant 15 neem trees on the gardens of the Grand Bahama Humane Society, taking the organization’s message of greener is better to new grounds where a four-legged population will enjoy the shady outdoors.

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