The Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprises-Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) Project, Abia State coordinating office on Friday held a-4 day training on Gender Action Learning System(GALS) at Umuikaa, Isia-alangwa north local government area and Isiala Ukwu Mbato, Obingwa LGA of Abia State.
The trainees of the event are beneficiaries of the LIFE-ND agro training program who are refered to as incubatees. The project is on going in the nine Niger-Delta state of Nigeria.
Dr Clement Uwem, the livelihood Improvement Family enterprises, Rural Institution, Gender and Youth Coordinator in his address about the importance of the GALS training revealed that the training is a methodology set out by the project in achieving goals. He also added that the training helps to mainstream gender in the LIFE-ND project.
Dr Uwem emphasized on the use of GALS tools which he said is aimed at ensuring that “men and women are cooperating in order to receive individual goal, family goals, communal goals and even societal goals”.
In his words: “We teach things like vision regioning, visioning tools, empowerment leadership map and family challenge tree. All these terminologies are to ensure that men and women identify in their roles in the family in other to contribute to the wellbeing of the family.
“The goal of this GALS training is nutrition. It is to ensure that people do not just make money, but they make money and live a heathy life and make money from the practices. We need to eat food with vitamins. We also training own home seed gardens in other to have and also know the benefit of balance diet.” Dr Uwem added.
Dr Uchenna Rowland Onyeizu, the project coordinator of Abia LIFE-ND in an interview said the whole idea of Gender and Youth Coordinator System , GALS is to ensure gender equity and mainstreaming in their project.
In his words: “The present training is to step down those trainings to their colleagues(Incubatees). The significance of the training is to ensure that whatever they are doing, gender becomes a priority in their project’s activities.”
Dr Onyeizu also added that the GALS training is designed to go round the beneficiaries of Abia LIFE-ND project.
Mr Anthony Nwaobilor, the Rural Institution and Gender Officer of Abia LIFE-ND coordinating office added that they are starting with the beneficiaries that have received their working Capital and the main goal is for them to have vision in their business venture.
Nwaobilor also added that the interest of the beneficiaries is so encouraging.
“This training is participatory and the participants are so encouraging. ” We are teaching them in the best possible way they can understand” Nwaobilor added.
Chidera Joyce, one of the beneficiaries of the project undergoing training in oil palm processing participated in the GALS training and said she has learnt a lot from the training especially on how to cut expenses that are not necessary for her family.
“Learning the family tree has actually helped me to plan myself by helping me to check the things I spend my money on especially when am not getting any profit from it. I now know how to plan and make my vision. The training has been impactful and am grateful to be part of LIFE-ND Project beneficiary” Chidera said.
Ikechukwu ThankGod Chiedozie, an incubatee of cassava production and processing also expressed satisfaction been part of the LIFE-ND project.
“From this training, I think I need to go and sit down and check myself to know my vision for the next three years. I now know that there must be challenges in my business and from this training, I have learnt how important it is to find a way out of those challenges. In fact it is taking me back to the drawing board. I now have a broader view of the end point I will have from cassava other than the garri.” Ikechukwu said.
Dr Uwem also said the LIFE-ND project which is designed to engage the youth for job creation will last for six years in the first stage and the second six years which will add up to twelve years based on performance and possibly be duplicated in the various zones in Nigeria.
Dr Uwem described the performance of Abia state coordinating office of LIFE-ND Project as a pioneer of the project because they include the physically challenged, women household and the youths.
“The interest is very high here and more youths are applying and the state government is very supportive.” Dr Uwem added.
The LIFE-ND Project is being funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development(IFAD). The project is ongoing in the nine Niger-Delta States.
Also involved in the project are the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, The Federal Ministry of Finance, budget and National Planning, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and the United Nations.