In a bid to eradicate poverty in the society, the Amaeli Elderly Women's Meeting, Rumuobiokani in Port Harcourt, has empowered their members with cash as a start-up grant to enable them set up small scale business that will help stimulate economic productivity.
The women were trained in the production of household items which include disinfectant, soap, insecticide, calendar, cosmetics, wig, beads/jewelry as well as fashion design, head gear styling; insecticide, calendar among others.
Speaking during the event, the President of the group, Comrade Mrs. Fanny George-Ogondah, said that the main objective of the capacity building and training activity was to create jobs, enhance and develop the women's capacities to become independent entrepreneurs and employers of labour.
According to her, the role women play in the society is to support their husbands and children. She said that it is a fact that when you empower a woman, you do not only empower her but also her community and the nation at large.
The President of the group made it clear that in the society, women are neglected, relegated and despised because culture portrays that the role of women is only in food provision and child bearing, saying they live in a contemporary cosmopolitan society and civilized era, where education, skills acquisition and entrepreneurship has enhanced the fundamental role of women as depicted by culture and made them competitive with their contemporaries in supporting the family.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Paramount Ruler of Evo Kingdom, His Majesty, King Leslie Nyebuchi Eke, thanked the group for their initiative and urged the government to evolve policies and programmes that will take care of the overall welfare of the women and other vulnerable groups in the society.
The monarch said that the federal government should set up skill acquisition centres and encourage these women to undergo various trainings with a view to making them self-reliant. And that the government should equally ensure that these programmes actually get to the targeted audience.
The Paramount Ruler also urged the beneficiaries to judiciously make use of the skill acquired so as to make progress in life, saying no matter how little the assistance may be, it is a good start and challenge other cooperate bodies to emulate the gesture.
The Chairman of the occasion, Chief Sir Charles Emelu, who was represented by Sir Prince Daniel, said that he has been part of the programme from the beginning to the execution day and thanked God for the success.
He stressed that the programme was to ensure that they empower the elderly women that have been trained in skill acquisition programme, so as to go back and start producing the products which they have been trained on, and sell them to grow the economy.
Sir Daniel admonished the beneficiaries that the money was to assist them to establish their own businesses and not for them to buy clothes, add more shoes to their rack of shoes or use it to cook.