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Disaster Relief TTFF’s Way

Bahamians like George and Sissel Johnson lost nearly everything when Hurricane Dorian hit in 2019. Photo credit: Smithsonian Magazine

Trees That Feed Foundation is proactive. Afterall, the best time to plant a tree is now (or yesterday!) However, when disasters occur, we can be reactive.

As you’ll learn from this story, we don’t retreat after the peak of devastation. We stay the course. Our special talent is helping people help themselves.

In 2019, Hurricane Dorian pummeled the Bahamas. George and Sissel Johnson’s Ol’ Freetown Farm on East Grand Bahama was destroyed. They lost animals, crops, and sadly, a long-time farm employee.

George Johnson practicing grafting under the watchful eyes of Dr. Ken Banks and Steve Herndon in Florida.

Over the past five years, Trees That Feed and others have helped reforest the farm. The First Lady of the Bahamas, Mrs. Ann Marie Davis, even presented 50 breadfruit trees to the Johnsons in the spirit of the 50th Bahamas Independence anniversary.

This month, TTFF sent George to Florida to learn to propagate his trees, producing new shoots that will become saplings. TTFF board member Dr. Ken Banks and TTFF partner Steve Herndon of Hidden Acres Mango Farm coached George on agronomy and a grafting.

George’s first attempts at grafting were a success!

 

Dr. Banks later reported, “Star grafting student, George Johnson, had multiple successful grafts from his first lesson!”

You can learn about propagation here

George returned to Grand Bahama with new and improved varieties of mango trees, donated by Steve and his wife, Mia.

Ol’ Freetown Farm is on the road to recovery! George and Sissel are grateful that the TTFF family is on this journey with them.

And that’s how TTFF provides disaster relief!

Watch a Thank You message from George here

 

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