The Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) recently gave US$100 to each of 100 Ebola survivors in Kakata, Margibi County, following a two-day intensive training on business management.
At the end of the training, Madam Roseline Toweh, YWCA National General Secretary, said the business grant is intended to empower the survivors to start businesses of their own to sustain their families.
The project, she said, is sponsored by the Association of Evangelicals in Liberia (AEL), and will last for 14 months, beginning this month. She said the project also seeks to put women and men who were directly affected by the Ebola virus in a better position to sustain their families.
The project will provide US$200 for each of the targeted survivors, but the money, she added, will be given in two segments.
“Today we are giving out the first US$100 for you to start your business, but that is not all we have for you under this project. Our (associates) will come with you beginning next week to collect your identification (ID) cards, because we are going to use US$50 to open a bank account for each of you, and the balance US$50 will be given to you later to add to your business,” Madam Toweh told the smiling beneficiaries.
The bank account, she said, will be controlled by the beneficiaries, while the YWCA will only monitor the process, noting that the recipients are expected to save some of their profits in the account since the YWCA might not always be in the position to help them.
“We are not opening the accounts for ourselves. When the accounts are opened, each of you will have your bank books, but all we want is for you to save some of your profits. Our (associates) will work with you all through the banking process, and will only give us the deposit slips from the banks so we can give our report to the donors. But the money is for you. You do not have to pay it back to the YWCA,” she told the beneficiaries.
The project seeks to improve the livelihood of Ebola survivors and help them provide care for their children.
As part of the project, YWCA will pay school fees for orphans who are being cared for by targeted survivors in Kakata.
The recipients of the grant expressed gratitude to the YWCA for what they referred to as a “life changing opportunity” for them, promising to use the funds wisely.