APPEALS takes over 100 People With Disabilities off kogi streets

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One of the poultry houses at the site.

One of fish ponds at the site.

By Dada Ahmed in Lokoja.

The $200 million World Bank/ Federal government project, known as Agro Processing, Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS), has taken 102 of Persons with Disabilities, PWDs, off the streets of kogi state.

Our Correspondent reports that
those concerned now engage in new agricultural venture either in poultry or acqua culture, rather than looking for the scarce white-collar job in the state.

Our Correspondent gathered that APPEALS, a six-year programme,takes place in Kogi,Kaduna, Kano, Cross River, Lagos and Enugu state and is expected to end in 2023.

Speaking with our Correspondent in Lokoja on Friday in Lokoja, the Chairman, cluster farms,one of the components of the project,Mr Daniel Arome Ibrahim, said that work on the farms had reached 90 per cent.

According to him, when fully operational, it would set the unemployed members of PWDs in the state on the process of contributing to the agrcultural development of the state and attain self sustainance.

He commended the state government and the management of APPEALS for ensuring the release of the fund for the participants, getting them positively engaged in an empowerment project to reduce unemployment.

Our Correspondent,who visited two the farms located within the premises of the State State Rehabilitation Centre, Lokoja reports that construction on the structures housing poultry and acqua culture are almost completed for operation.

Ibrahim disclosed that PWDs in acqua culture were waiting the delivery of poultry items and birds from Ibadan,Oyo state, to begin their operation as well.

He said that each of the initial 85 PWDs got N 2.17 million from the World Bank to either involve in poultry or acqua culture, after passing through various docunentary processes to access the fund.

Ibrahim added that the Governor of the state, Alhaji Yahaha Bello, out of his love for PWDs, directed that additional 17 PWDs be added to the number, adding that the governor personally paid for them to enable them participate in the project.

The Reporters gathered that APPEALS is aimed at supporting the government policy thrust and priorities for the agricultural sector,boost agricultural productivity and improving farmers’ linkages with agro processors.

The project is also aimed at supporting the transition of small subsistence farmers’ production system(farming 1-5 ha) to a market-oriented agricultural undertaking, and supporting middle size farmers(5-10 ha).

It is also meant to address constraints facing them and enhance their productivity as well as ensure effective participation of participants in the Value Chains among other advantages.

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