Regional News Thu, 9 Mar 2006

Upper East Women Appeal for Assistance.

Bolgatanga, March 9, GNA - Women in the Upper East Region on Thursday appealed to District Assemblies and administrators of the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS II) programme to give financial assistance to hard working women in the region to enable them to establish or expand their businesses.

They noted that women had a great store of potential to help develop their districts and support their children to have good education, but could not do so with little or no money to invest. The women made the appeal at a seminar on, "Making the GPRS II work: Ghanaian Women Accessing Production Resources and other Opportunities in Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy," organised by the Social Enterprise Development (SEND) of West Africa in Bolgatanga, as part of activities to mark this year's International Women's Day celebration.

The day was observed under the theme, "Women in decision making: meeting challenges and creating change."

The participants said the GPRS II resources, like credit facilities, loans and agricultural inputs could be of great help to women, and appealed to the authorities of the Programme to give greater attention to Women farmers.

The women, however, suggested that allocation of the resources be devoid of politics, religious or other social considerations and asked stakeholders to ensure equitable distribution of resources through genuine needs identification.

They said many women were ignorant of the opportunities available to them, and called on the GPRS II to intensify education on the programme to make them aware of the assistance packages they could access.


Mr. Thomas Adongo of SEND said the seminar was meant to inform the women of the productive resources and development opportunities available in the GPRS and the HIPC programmes.

He said the ultimate goal of the seminar was to equip the women to be able to access productive resources and other development opportunities in the GPRS II.

Mr. Joseph Abugre, Bolgatanga Municipal Development Planning Officer, said for the GPRS II to work successfully, the operational strategy should include an active involvement of the population and service providers in the implementation of development programmes.

"The procedure should create opportunities for popular participation at the community level where the people meet to plan and implement local self-help development projects, for if the local residents make decisions, they are more likely to be relevant to local needs and conditions", he explained.

Mr. Abugre called for an increase in the district assembly common fund for districts in the northern sector, as they were poorer than the others, saying that it would help a lot of women and their families. 09 March 06

Source: GNA