GFPA empowers local groups

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Gambia Family Planning Association (GFPA) recently empowered five community-based organizations with income generating facilities and cash worth more than D250,000.

The beneficiary communities are within the implementation zone of the Trans-Gambia Bridge Corridor (TGBC) project, funded by the African Development Bank.

The microfinance support was the second phase of a sensitization and gender empowerment contract awarded to the GFPA by the Ministry of Works, Construction and Infrastructure, and the National Road Authority.

The support to the community-based organizations was preceded by series of sensitizations on road safety, sexually transmitted diseases and first aid application for drivers, ‘chef de garages’, health workers, police officers and school children within TGBC project area.

The assistance was in response to a request made by the five associations during consultative meetings spearheaded by the GFPA with a view to sound their entrepreneurial aspirations.

Salaloo Drama Group in Farafenni received soap making utensils and inputs, as well as meat and cereal grinders and a cheque for D5,000.

Presenting the items, GFPA Executive Director Yankuba Dibba described the drama group as a crucial means of public sensitization on matters pertinent to personal, communal and national development.

He said GFPA would also give D1,000 to the group as transportation cost anytime they go out to perform drama. The GFPA earlier registered the drama group at the Attorney General’s Chambers as a legal entity that can tap and benefit from any future project.

The lead consultant, Foma Ceesay, said the donation was a capital seed, the success of which would attract more benefits for the group.  He thus urged the group to endeavor to make the most out of the venture.

The GFPA Area Manager for NBR Modou Ndure, the Councillor of Farafenni Ward Modou Lamin Jagne and GFPA liaison in Farafenni Sainey Dibba all commended GFPA for their hard work and dedication to the welfare of local communities.

The president of the Salaloo Drama Group, Nyarra Jadama, expressed gratitude over the gesture noting that it will enable them to provide more support to their families.

Kanbeng-kafo and Takuligaye women garden groups in Kunjo village, North Bank Region, were also lucky beneficiaries of the GFPA’s generosity.  Each of the two groups received assortment of horticultural implements and inputs including seeds and insecticides.

Speaking at the presentation ceremony, the lead consultant of the project, Foma Ceesay, urged the beneficiaries to utilize the items judiciously.

He advised them to remain united and ensure the success of the venture in order to attract more of similar projects.

GFPA Senior Programme Officer Modou Njie lauded ADB and NRA for the support and urged the beneficiaries to reciprocate the gesture by making the most out of the donated items.

The Alkalo of Kunjo, Lang Conteh, and others such as Mariama Faye of KanbengKafo, Ya Awa Faye of Takuligaye, and the chairman of the village development committee Suma Jadama all welcomed the gesture. They noted that the assistance will promote food security and enable them to better cater for their family needs. 

Kumdeh-kai Drama group in Jarra Sankuwia Lower River Region also received entrepreneurial support in the form of  soap making equipment and inputs, as well as meat and cereal grinders, dozens of plastic chairs for income generation and a cheque for D5,000.

The drama group was also registered earlier at the Attorney General’s Chambers as a full fledge legal entity by the GFPA.

Presenting the items, GPFA Executive Director Yankuba Dibba reaffirmed his agency’s commitment to the development and general welfare of local communities.

He expressed hope that upon completion the Trans-Gambia Corridor project, there will be bigger market to entrepreneurs in the area.

Mr Dibba also promised the group D1,000 for transportation cost anytime they embark on public sensitisation.

The lead consultant, Foma Ceesay, and GFPA Senior Programme Officer Modou Njie urged the group to work hard for the success of the venture in order to attract more support.

They enjoined the beneficiaries to remain united and steadfast in enlightening people on road safety, reproductive health and family welfare.

The GFPA project coordinator, Abdou Rufa Sanneh, and the Area Manager Jahey Jamanka, made similar remarks. 

The Alkalo of Sankuwia, Madi Kanyi, and one Seedy Jammeh both described the drama group as a source of pride for their community. The duo noted that the assistance will motivate the group to be more proactive in sensitizing the public on relevant issues.

In a bid to promote road safety, the GFPA also donated over 250 reflectors to the Association of Donkey and Ox Cart Drivers in Jarra Soma, Lower River Region.

The donation comprising reflector jackets, triangular standers and traffic reflectors was a fulfillment of the road safety component of the Trans-Gambia Bridge Corridor project.

In his address, a road safety expert, Alhaji Lang K Conteh, said donkey and ox carts are vital means of transportation in the area and urged the beneficiaries to make best use of the items to promote road safety.

A representative of the chairman of Mansakonko Area Council, Dodou Saidyba, made similar comments.

Couple Ousman Mbye, and the president of the association, Alhaji Baba Drammeh, both lauded the gesture citing the crucial role cart drivers play in transporting goods within the area particularly places that cannot be accessed by vehicles.

The duo warned that any cart driver found without reflectors will be dealt with and further warned people of the area to desist from giving carts to minors.

GPFA Executive Director Yankuba Dibba, and a specialist in community development, Mamanding Kuyateh, who is also a senior consultant of the project, reiterated their continued support to the association with a view to enhance road safety within the implementation zone of the Trans-Gambia Bridge Corridor project.