In Phase One, to work with individuals, schools, churches, and communities throughout the length and breadth of The Bahamas to be the source they turn to for supplies without charge and mentorship without compensation as we re-boot the desire to farm. In Phase Two, to take what is remaining from the initial distribution of supplies and knowledge to assist those who wish to start or expand commercial farming. Together, from the smallest backyard vegetable garden to the largest produce, poultry, or porcine farm, ADO will drive down the annual $1 billion-plus food import burden on The Bahamas while improving the quality of life through healthier, unpreserved, more naturally grown and packaged food for all.
Twenty years ago, I baked a loaf of coconut bread, put it in my beat-up van, and parked by a beach. A man walked by and looked at me and I could see the hunger in his eyes before even noticing the holes in his shoes.
I rolled down the windows and handed him the bread.
Years later and with more loaves and sharing than I would ever count, I understood the truth. Hunger will never end, but we can, as caring, compassionate human beings, slow its pace, and limit the pain it causes. And we can do it the way our wise ancestors did. They grew what they ate and even if the table wasn’t set with the finest silver, it had the freshest vegetables and eggs. It had a chicken dinner on Sunday. Farming. If only we could grow what we eat and eat what we grow, we could slash our $1 billion-plus annual food import bill, ease the pangs of those who go to bed hungry and we would have a healthier population.
And so after years of feeding others, the last decade as executive director of the Bahamas Feeding Network, in 2022, I launched the Agricultural Development Organization (Bahamas), a not-for-profit created to rekindle a desire to farm by not only showing its benefits and necessity but by providing supplies, tools, and resources to make agriculture a thriving reality and a reawakened and respected national industry.
With major corporate sponsorships, we have begun to make a difference. 2500 new backyard farms in less than two years. Farms in more than two dozen schools. Community farms in church yards, even above-ground soil beds in former parking lots. Join us on the journey.
In 1969 Philip Smith began high school at 11 years of age at the Government High School. He graduated at age 15 in 1974. In 1975 he attended the last lower six form at Government High School. He completed upper six in 1976 at The College Of The Bahamas.
From 1976 to 1978 he worked with his brother Kevin Smith at Regal Bahama Realtors which was a real estate sales and development company.
From January 1979 to May 1982, he attended Pace University, located in New York City, where he completed a bachelor’s degree in public accounting. In June 1982 he began working at Coopers and Lybrand Accounting firm as a student accountant. He qualified as a certified public accountant in 1984. He remained with Coopers and Lybrand until 1987.
He began working at Gold Circle Company as President in 1987. The company was owned by Philip and his two brothers. The company began operations in 1985.
Gold Circle became one of the largest middle income housing developers in The Bahamas.
In 2005 Philip began a charitable feeding organization called Kingdom Mercy Ministries, where he acted as chairman. In 2013 Kingdom Mercy Ministries became Bahamas Feeding Network, with a full board of directors, where Philip has been The Executive Director from 2013 to 2021.
It was during his last year at BFN, when inflation coupled with the COVID pandemic revealed just how dire food insecurity is in The Bahamas. During this time, Philip saw on a deeper level what hunger can do to a person.
It was this experience that led Philip to start the Agricultural Development Organization (ADO).
Philip knew that we as a nation need to solve our hunger crisis from the root. Philip leaned on an ancient proverb “
Organizations that he has been involved with are as follows: –
- Batelco Director
- Chairman of Endowment for Performing Arts
- Chairman of Prices Commission
- Chairman of Young Presidents organization
- Executive Director Bahamas Feeding Network
“The Church Commercial Farming Group takes this opportunity to extend an exuberant Thank You to the Agriculture Development Organisation for your recent generous financial donation. It is through this partnership and your faithful support that we are able to work together as the national Church towards our goal of sustainable food security for our nation. ADO is an organisation that sees the future and understands what it takes to get there. And indeed is open to partnering with those who have a vision for a better Bahamas.”
– Rev. Patrick Paul, Church Commercial Farming Group
“On behalf of myself, the administrative staff of Preston H. Albury High and students we say thank you. The motto of Preston H. Albury high school is to strive for excellence. With the donation received from the Agriculture Development Organisation the ability to actively engage students in the field of agriculture will be taken to new heights. The students are the future! A Bahamas which can feed itself is the way. As a school we will do our part in this mission. Thank you.”
– Mr. Perez Armaly, Agriculture Teacher, Preston H. Albury