By Seriki Adinoyi
A non-profit humanitarian organisation, Women For Women International (WWFI), said it has trained over 72,000 women in more than 55 Nigerian communities on various skill acquisitions that are now helping them to make a living.
It added that the group trains an average of 4,500 women annually.
Addressing graduands at a closing ceremony to mark its achievements in the last five years, Country Director of WFWI, Mrs. Bukola Onyisi said the group which is committed to providing skills, knowledge and resources that create sustainable change for women, their families and their communities, had a total of nine strategic interventions, three of which empowered the organisation to identify committed and reliable partners to provide with sub grants.
She added that APURIMAC, Country Women Association of Nigeria (COWAN), International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria, Centre for the Advocacy of Justice and Rights (CAJR) started partnering with WFWI in 2016/2017 in three Local Government Areas of Plateau state; Riyom, Jos East and Pankshin.
According to her, COWAN provided safer methods to save money and access credit, while WFWI introduced women-led informal savings and lending mechanisms such as village savings and loans associations, revolving loan funds/saving circles.
Onyishi added that APURIMAC was responsible for WFWI staff, successful former women participants, NGO and government partners with volunteers to provide intensive support and mentorship to business developed by program participants.
She said with the help of FIDA/CAJR, WFWI developed a new ‘Change Agent’ program and curriculum, through a participatory approach with WFWI beneficiaries, NGO partners and trained selected women with partnerships built with local partners to collaborate and include marginalised women on advocacy at the community level to influence traditional or customary law and practice.
Riyom local government Chairman, Mafeng Gwallson, while appreciating WFWI for its efforts towards empowering the women to be home builders in the society, said “women need to be empowered and encouraged, and for this reason, I promise to solicit on their behalf to the legislatives and other local government leaders.”
A beneficiary of the WFWI, Mrs. Helen Danjuma appreciated the organisation for empowering her and other women, noting that they were taught skills like catering, poultry, sewing and how to keep record and save money.