Gambia Family Planning Association recently empowers three more associations in
the North Bank and Lower River Regions with income generating facilities and
cheques worth over D136, 000.
It also launched a nine-month awareness campaign on HIV/AIDS, road safety and women empowerment at the Farafenni Community Radio Station.
The initiatives form part of a two-year program the GFPA is currently executing, under the auspices of the African development Bank, Ministry of Works and Construction and the National Road Authority, within the implementation zone of the Trans Gambia Corridor project.
The entrepreneurial assistance forms part of the gender empowerment component of the TGC project and the donated items were requested by the groups during consultations with GFPA officials.
The beneficiaries Kuteh-Jonbulu kafoo of Bereto village in NBR received soap making implements and inputs, as well as groundnut milling and meat grinding machines; the GFPA Youth Action Movement (YAM) in Jarra Soma a deep freezer, cooler boxes and two sewing machines and Misera Women group in LRR soap making implements and inputs, groundnut and meat milling machines and cooking utensils. Each of the groups also received a cheque for D5000 as their working capital.
Presenting the items, the Executive Director of GFPA Yankuba Dibba said the largesse is for the economic empowerment of women and youths with a view to mitigate household poverty promote peace and tranquility at household level. He described the support as a start up investment and urged the three groups to work hard to ensure the sustenance of their ventures.
Mr Dibba commended YAM for their selfless collaboration with GFPA in promoting the reproductive health of youths since 2004. He offered space and electricity at their clinic in Mansakonko to YAM to establish their enterprise and urged them to take advantage of the opportunity to maximize their business.
Other speakers at the presentation ceremonies included the lead consultant Foma Ceesay, an expert in community development Mamanding Kuyateh and GFPA Senior program officer Momodou Njie.
They urged the beneficiaries to remain united and endeavor to make their ventures a model saying the success of any venture is dependent on the commitment of the proprietor.
The trio urged youths to take advantage of opportunities in the country saying life is not all rosy even in Europe. Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries amid fanfare and jubilation Amie Mboge of Kuteh-Jonbulu Kafoo,
Ousman Ndow of YAM and Fatim Jallow of Misera Women group and the village Alkalo Ismaila all thanked GFPA and partners for the support. They described the assistance as unprecedented and vowed to make the most out of it.
The Nine-month Radio Sensitization
The GFPA is currently working with 10 community based organizations within the implementation zone of TGCP including schools “chef de garages”, Association of Horse and Donkey Cart drivers and frontline health workers.
Six of the groups have been earlier donated with new radio sets to enable them follow sensitizations on HIV/AIDS, road safety and women empowerment by various experts. The one-hour program began on 2nd May 2017 and comes on air every Tuesday.
The targeted groups are Bereto Kuteh-Jonbulu Kafoo, Farafenni Kanyelleng kafoo, Kunjo kanbeg Kafoo, kunjo Takuligaye all in NBR, as well as Sankuya Theatre group and Misera Women kafoo in LRR.
GFPA project officials also recently donated a cheque for D500 to each of the groups for the cost of battries prior to the commencement of the radio program. Presenting the cheques and feedback forms to the associations, the executive director of GFPA Yankuba Dibba said the radio programmes conducted in Mandinka, Fula and Wolof are aimed at promoting the sexual and reproductive health of women and youths, women empowerment, road safety and HIV/AIDS prevention and care.
The lead Consultant Foma Ceesay, expert in community development Mamanding Kuyateh and GFPA Senior programme officer Momodou Njai echoed similar sentiments. They urged the groups to keenly follow the radio talk show, adhere to the advice given and always seek clarification on issues unclear to them. As part of the awareness campaign GFPA also mounted four billboards with messages on road safety and HIV prevention at Farafenni, Kerr Ali, Soma and Misera.