By Mohammed Aminu in Sokoto
The Sokoto State Government in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)Â MondayÂ commenced the training for 200 widows on vocational skills with a view to enhancing their living conditions.
The vocational training would focus on knitting, poultry, animal husbandry, soap making, detergent, shoe, bag, cosmetics and pomade making, among others.
Speaking during the commencementÂ of the programme in Sokoto, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry for Women Affairs, Hajia Aisha Muhammed, said the programme was part of efforts to deliver the ministry’s mandate on enhancing the living conditions of women in the state.
She explained that the training is meant to empower them with useful skills to enable them to be productive by engaging in a business of their choice.
According to her, the benefiting women were selected from the 23 local local government areas of the state.
Muhammed said government would continue to ensure more coverage especially in the rural areas, adding that local government coordinators were appointed to supervise them as well as train others within the communities.
The permanent secretary noted that widows are vulnerable as husbands left them with dependants to cater for.
“These women have lost their husbands and are in dire need of a skill to commence their businesses.Â So, the training will enable them engage in one business or the other in order to assist in shouldering the burden of their families,” she stated.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning, Alhaji Aminu Halliru, said the state government would ensure prompt payment of all counterpart funding on various partnership programmes that would benefit its people.
Halliru underscored the importance of the programme and expressed optimism that it would enhance the lives of women as well as their immediate families.
He called on the beneficiaries to effectively utilise the skills acquired and the funds to improve the lives of their children.
“You should avoid mismanaging the funds that would be given to you. I urge you to engage in activities that will be beneficial to your progress and that of your children,” he added.