P&G Alumni Foundation partners with United Way Ghana to undertake a Socio-Economic Development Program in Senya Beraku
United Way Ghana partnered with the P&G Alumni Foundation to embark on a Socio-Economic Development program in Senya Beraku, an underserved residential area in the Awutu Central District of the Central Region. The initiative commenced on 13th April, 2021. It comprised a vocational skills training program, a beekeeping training program and a finance and business development seminar.
The local economy faced financial constraints resulting from the unavailability of fish due to dwindling stocks (a result of overfishing by foreign trawlers) and the unpredictable yields from farming due to reliance on rainfall (no irrigation available). The financial hardship was compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic which had added increased pressure to provide food and healthcare to already struggling families. The poverty in Senya Beraku also led to child labour and trafficking.
The goal of this project was to tackle the poverty in Senya Beraku by diversifying livelihood opportunities and supporting financial stability for farmers and fisher folks. We sought to empower individuals and families by training them in multiple areas of trade while teaching them the basic principles of financial stability to the end that they would have appreciable skills coupled with a requisite understanding of financial literacy and business management to engage in small scale businesses. We believe this project is a significant catalyst for economic empowerment. If the businesses that are formed from this project are managed well by the beneficiaries, it will provide a pathway out of poverty and act as an engine for growth for the people of Senya Beraku, said Janet L. Butler, acting Executive Director of United Way Ghana.
The target of this initiative was 40 residents of Senya Beraku. They comprised families of fishermen and farmers who are affected financially during the lean season, unemployed youth and single parents who are vulnerable. These individuals were trained for three months. Twenty of them underwent the vocational skills training program. This included beadcraft, batik tie and dye, soap making and pastries making. The remaining twenty beneficiaries underwent the beekeeping training program. The beneficiaries were also equipped with entrepreneurial and finance management skills to enable them set-up and run their micro-businesses successfully once the training concluded. On the 16th of July, 2020, the beneficiaries under this program graduated with each of their businesses registered.
Starter packs have been given to the beneficiaries to start their businesses. We believe that in time, not only will their finances stabilize but there will be a rise in it as well, notwithstanding the unreliable rainfall patterns. It will also help preserve the fish since pressure on marine resources will drop due to the diversification of their options to make ends meet. Parents will be able to support children's education and vices among the youth will decrease as well.
The project was funded by a grant from the P&G Alumni Foundation Fund of The Greater Cincinnati Foundation and supported by our implementing partners: Engage Now Africa, Lead Afrique International, Cheerful Hearts Foundation, Community Leaders and the District Assembly office.