MAKING a difference in the district of Saqani in Cakaudrove, youths of Naboutini Village have embarked on major farming projects.
The project — yaqona farming — has seen each member of the Naboutini Youth Club have a bank account with savings.
Club adviser Inia Cagilevu said the farming projects belonged to individual members.
The 23 youths started their farming projects two years ago and have a target of 650 yaqona plants to harvest by the end of three years. Apart from helping out with the club initiatives, the youths also have their own root crop plantation.
Mr Cagilevu said since the farming project started, the youths have been active in ensuring that the farms bring them sweet rewards.
"They are committed youths who know the sweet results of their yaqona farms and they are not giving up even if natural disasters damage the farms," he said.
"In fact, Tropical Cyclone Evan did some damage but the youths are determined to meet their target and receive the amount of money already forecasted.
"Every week they plant yaqona and we have worked out the total amount of money they will get from harvesting the 650 plants after three years."
Mr Cagilevu said the youths had secured a market in Labasa.
"A relative who also hails from Naboutini will buy the grog and to help the youths, he is offering $35 for a kilogram of waka.
"So the boys, at the end of the third year, have to uproot 16 plants every week out of which they are expected to earn about $560 a week. That is a lot of money and we have opened bank accounts for them to save their money," Mr Cagilevu said.
Money already deposited into their accounts, he said, were from their own farms established before the project started.
Mr Cagilevu said the youths have worked with him in ensuring savings were kept in the bank.
"The other members of the club who don't have bank account each will open an account soon and we have liaised with some commercial banks in Labasa."