How do you convince your neighbors not to move when the community you live in does not offer many opportunities even though it looks like a tropical paradise.

One visionary says he knows how --- “create the opportunities and they will stay.”



Photojournalist and filmmaker Barbara Pyle meets Terry Williams, who lives in Bluefields, Jamaica.  For years, Bluefields’ residents have been flocking to Kingston and other cities looking for work.  As a solution, Terry and other young people formed the Bluefields Peoples Community Association, the B.P.C.A.


The BPCA revitalizes the local community by starting small businesses. One of the most successful is a clothing factory that is both literally and figuratively  sewing seeds of change. Since women in Jamaica often carry loads on their heads, the woman are making cottas. The cottas go under the load to ease the weight. Terry says, “This operation is going to ease the pressure, economic pressure, off their heads.” Single mothers who work there are getting new opportunities and identities outside of childbearing.  Terry has noticed a changing trend: as women become less dependent on men, they have fewer children.

Creating opportunities for women is central to the BPCA mission.  A banner at the community center reaffirms this ethic: "As a river cannot rise without its source, so a nation cannot rise without its women."





Members also go into the community to talk to local residents about their unmet needs -acting as a support group on legal, economic and agricultural issues.




Agricultural expert Dickey Gifford is part of the BPCA staff who assists local farmers in keeping their plants healthy. He also teaches classes in perma-culture, natural pest-control and composting.



Terry believes the future of Bluefields looks bright as more people stay put and invest in the best resources they have: themselves.




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