The Nation Wide Resource Organization (NWRO) has officially launched the ‘Fuel Wood Project’ for youth empowerment and sustainable management of the Western Area Peninsular, over the weekend at Ogoo Farm.
The beneficiaries of the Le 80 million project which was designed by the Ministry of Youths and Sport (MYS) and the Youth Employment Secretariat (YES), are the Ogoo Farm Youth Association.
Addressing the audience made up mostly of Ogoo Farm youths, at the Ogoo Farm Community School hall where the launching took place, the Chairman of the ceremony, F S Kanu explained, “deforestation posed a major environmental threat…” adding, “I hope the youths would take this problem very seriously.”
He appealed to the youths, “to embrace this project,” pointing out that “the rains are causing a lot of flooding, due to deforestation in the community.”
The chairman also stated that apart from addressing deforestation, the project would also assess the issue of unemployment.
In his welcome address, Village Head, Chief Bai Kabbia stated, “today is a big day in our community.”
Chief Kabbia explained that the designers and the implementing partner which is NWRO have made the right decision by choosing Ogoo Farm Youth Association as the beneficiary of the project, “because our community depends on agriculture for its sustenance,” he said.
The village head stressed, “…deforestation and sand mining has ruined our community,” and pledged the community’s commitment towards the project.
In his statement, NWRO Program Coordinator Mr Raymond S Kanu N’Silk explained that the project is going to embark on the planting of trees for the preservation of deforested land.
He disclosed that the first quarter of the project money which is Le 32,660,000 is already in the project’s account.
Mr Kanu said that it is up to the youth to embrace the project so that it would turn out to be successful. UNDP representative, Wahab Shaw explained that the project is a pilot project. He said, “… deforestation is affecting our rainfall, and as such we are often faced with water shortage as a result of poor rainfall.” Because of environmental degradation due to deforestation, he said, “government came up with the initiative to plant trees in order to reclaim these lands.”
Mr Wahab stated that the project is part of a whole, adding that the money would be given in four stages.
He also congratulated the beneficiaries for what he described as “a very good start…”