Nov 3, 2009, 3:10 PM
The First Lady, Madam Fatoumatta Bah-Barrow expressed interest
to support and interact with Gambian women in their pursuit to enhance their
livelihood. In pursuit of her passion
for women empowerment, Madam Bah-Barrow visited several women’s initiatives in
Banjulnding, Brikama and Sinchu Alagie on Friday. She also witnessed the beginning of the
operations of 10 children at the Francis Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul,
At Banjulunding Madam Bah- Barrow witnessed the display of a variety of processed and packaged local products made by women in the locality.
Speaking at the occasion veteran politician and entrepreneur Yamundow Gaye-Yarbo emphasised the vital role women play in socio-economic development and poverty eradication. She commended the women for adding value to products from honey into cosmetics and healthy food products. The Banjulunding women also processed and packaged local fruits from Moringa, ginger, wonjo and mangoes. Neem leaves were also processed into medicated soap and cosmetic products.
Kairaba Fatty the chairman of the group and Mam Sillah, the production manager both informed the First Lady and delegation the skills training provided to women.
At Brikama, Director of Women Initiative The Gambia (WIG), a women organization, Isatou Ceesay said they worked with women from 10 villages to recycle, and manage local waste. Women from the different villages were trained to transform waste into useful products such as briquettes as alternative to charcoal from trees, organic fertilizer and other products.
Mrs Ceesay said the recycling of waste was to contribute to the management of climate change, create source of income for the women and promote a healthy environment. She show-cased samples of recycled materials into plastic bag bricks, cooking stoves from trashed metals and several other products recycled from old tyres.
The women shared constraints hindering the expansion of their businesses including lack of markets, equipment and funding support.
The minister of environment Lamin B. Dibba, Trade Minister, Dr Isatou Touray, Health Minister Saffie Lowe, Secretary General, Dawda Fadera and other officials, encouraged the women for the laudable initiatives. The initiatives compliment the government’s effort to preserve the environment, promote health and increase the economic status of women.