An international non-governmental organization, BRAC-Liberia, has launched a two-year food and nutrition program in Robertsports, Grand Cape Mount County. The project also targets Bomi, Margibi, Montserrado, Bong and Grand Bassa counties.
BRAC-Liberia Country Representative Mainuddin Ahmed said the launch is part of the entity’s efforts to address government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) and food security.
The project, valued at US$1.5 million, will support less fortunate farmers by empowering them with requisite implements and agricultural products that would guarantee the production of more food in the selected counties.
It would also allow the farmers to have access to better nutrition to strengthen the country’s suffering economy. The project is funded by the European Union (EU). It will target about 7,501 households and 38,255 people as beneficiaries in the six counties.
BRAC Program Manager Jaraf Eqbal said the program is mainly intended to support the poor and food-nutrition insecure to be able to react to crises and strengthen resilience in the country. The program which will improve the food and nutrition security situation of vulnerable population groups began
October 2016 and will be in operation until September 2018.
BRAC’s Country Representative Mainuddin Ahmed told beneficiaries that in order for the project to succeed, BRAC will visit and consult with the leaders of the 5,200 small farms and 50 senior government officials, who are parts of the targeted households across the six counties. Others to form part of the program will include 90 market actors.
According to Mr. Ahmed, 65 percent of BRAC’s 97,521 employees are women, “because the organization strives to enable people to reach their potential by working through financial services, capacity building, and livelihood development as well as health, education and social justice.”
He added: “Before this project ends in 2018, 390 most vulnerable household groups will be engaged in cash for work, 1,625 poor households will receive training on poultry and livestock rearing, and the capacity of 5,200 smallholder farmers will be enhanced on climate smart agriculture technologies.’’
Ahmed promised to develop the capacities of 26 agricultural entrepreneurs, while 2,340 pregnant and lactating women from the above households will be trained on improved nutrition at household level.
Grand Cape Mount County Agriculture Coordinator Edward Gbee thanked BRAC for the project, which he described as an opportunity for Liberians in the targeted counties.
Gbee urged Cape Mountaineers to take ownership of the project so that successful implementation is achieved.
BRAC was established in Liberia in 2008 to help over 360 vulnerable households engage in cash for work, and to train about 1,625 “poor” in poultry and livestock rearing.