Where are the young fishermen?

Founder of the 39-year old Oistins Fish Festival, Stella Lady St John, is concerned that Barbados’ fishing industry is at risk of dying out as fewer young people are entering the profession.

Delivering the Founder’s Day message at yesterday’s opening, the widow of the late prime minister, Sir Harold St John, said something has to be done about the absence of young men in the fishing industry.

“Are there any young people going out to sea to do fishing? I think not.

“I think nobody has been teaching fishing…I hear there are about 800 boats going out fishing every week, or every other week, and I’ve been asking the fishermen who own these boats if they will be willing to take out some young men, one at a time”.

Lady St John delivering the Founder’s Day speech.

Lady St John pointed out that young people are critical to the continuity of the fishing industry, and the answer lays in teaching them the trade.

“I don’t mean that you should go on the block and drag them all out, and say you must go and learn to be a fisherman, but some how or the other we must interest them in the sea.”

“Most young people in Barbados have never been out on a boat, not even a little craft, ” she said.

A section of the audience at the opening of the Oistins Fish Festival.

Also of great concern to Lady St John, credited with developing the fishing village to a major attraction, is the unkempt site of an old gas station in the Oistins Fish Gardens zone.

The old gas station at Oistins.

“Something’s got to be done with that. It’s an eyesore. It’s on good land, good space that could be used for something else.

“You’ve got to do everything possible to make it as appealing as possible… these things we need to do to make the environment beautiful”, Lady St John said.

15 Responses to Where are the young fishermen?

  1. Seth St John
    Seth St John March 27, 2016 at 4:03 pm

    We are here, wishing that of fisheries had the foresight to get off their lazy asses and establish some decent regulations so that the old fishermen didn’t rape the oceans and leave basically nothing for future generations.

  2. Tristan John
    Tristan John March 27, 2016 at 9:26 pm

    “…I don’t mean that you should go on the block and drag them all out…”

    • Buddy Love
      Buddy Love March 28, 2016 at 5:35 am

      Go on de block and drag them out. David, get ya boat out.lol

  3. Zed layson March 28, 2016 at 6:00 am

    Hear you Seth. … what about the Seyng nets. That drag everything off the inshore reefs…
    Tristan I am assuming she was highlighting alot of today’s idle youth with that particular comment… and she isn’t to far off the mark….

  4. HUGH FERGUSON March 28, 2016 at 9:02 am

    When asked “where are the young men for fishing”? There out robbing gas stations…..Easier living….

  5. Andrew Rudder March 28, 2016 at 10:01 am

    These young men can be involved in the Marine maintenance of the fishing fleet and some can be taken as apprentice crew members. All that has to be done is organization and effort!

  6. jrsmith March 28, 2016 at 11:10 am

    I am in agreement with many thing ,Lady ST. John is saying. the trouble with Oistin and Barbados , we have a government who is standing in the way of progress, unless anything is undertaken which put them in total control (individually) private sector they are not interested, secondly if loans are obtain for capital domestic projects ,and they cannot construct an ulterior motive the project would be kept on the burner for prolong periods of government after government , then to give favour to the party as if they have achieved something..

    Look at the St. John clinic project.

  7. seagul March 28, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    A school in handicraft should be given high priority in providing positive scope and vision for the youth. We are descendants of Yoruba, known the world over for their excellent traditional craftsmanship……..

  8. Damian Hinkson
    Damian Hinkson March 28, 2016 at 5:18 pm

    why? whats in it for me?

    • Angela Maria
      Angela Maria March 28, 2016 at 8:21 pm

      Smdh. Her questioned has been answered.

    • Damian Hinkson
      Damian Hinkson March 28, 2016 at 8:25 pm

      so tired of the older generation talking about youths do want to do nothing. the same older generation that born with a gold spoon and ent leave nothing for you youth.

  9. Menace II Babylon March 28, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    I won’t join the slagging off of our youth, and for the record they are not all out robbing gas stations, sticking up people and other non sensical thoughts. Media answers a request to satisfy the public with carnal images, stories about murder, mayhem and firearms.Good news never sells. Do you know how much graduated from UWI in 2015? And those with honours? Do you know how much working in active trades and jobs, how many trying to make it and gone back out to tertiary education ,my block got hustlers and go getters not what you assume as assumptions are made for …

    Where do u get the inclination the block is so negative and full of layabouts? Many of the same guys on the block work, have steady jobs and the block is used to unwind after work, drink a juice, Catch a game of dominos bun a joint, catch up, how many small enterprises spring up from the same block etc, you people ready to slag the youth without preparing adequate opportunities. If it was to do with tourists up you would see it offered and highlighted, bun that slave mentality, pulling chairs for Massa and smiling when you screw, You can’t even get labour work if you ain’t know somebody. When was the last time you hear about a fishing apprentenship being offered with adequate incentives? The plantations still active and have been replaced by hotels and restaurants where the options are limited to waiter, cook, barman, maid, hostess, grounds man etc. You people did the most when you was young and wild out, now you get grey and find white man Jesus you would criticise. Fire!

    Assist, make and prepare opportunities for the yutes and you would get jump. It’s a pity when society has given up when your daughters and sons make the populace. We are Africans despite how we behave with our cosmopolitan ways. We would live to fish as that is natural. Fishing exists among fishing communities. You ain’t see the jetty condemn but can spend millions celebrating a faux par independence. Smh

  10. Angela Maria
    Angela Maria March 28, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    No worries….free uwi education done wid. No more languishing on the Hill for 3 to 5 years (some a wunna put in 7 trying to pass Statistics, lol), to complete a degree to get shirt and tie job.
    Nuff a wanna gine either got to farm, fish or steal.

  11. jrsmith March 29, 2016 at 5:05 am

    @, Menace Babylon, hail hail, good shot, although I agreed with some things she said. I am running near to my 80th but ,you said you people did the most when you was young and wild out, now you get grey and find white man Jesus, you would criticise.. that is true , but for me I have my black Jesus (NELSON MANDELA).

  12. seagul March 29, 2016 at 12:16 pm

    Working people are not doing empowering/meaningful work not because they’re incapable of it—it is because they live in a class system where there’s no room for them to do this work, and that destroys Self-esteem. It does not allow them to develop their abilities, it excludes them. Then the financial structure is monopolized by about 1 percent—on every island in the Caribbean and they are a hundred percent primarily self-centered.
    Unity works–Yorunity………craft.


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