The World Food Programme (WFP) under its asset creation project, has disbursed GH¢ 1 million to about 2,000 people in the Sissala East District of the Upper West Region.
The beneficiaries, mainly from Nabugubelle, Taffiase, Kassanpuori and Jijen received amounts of monies ranging between GH¢400 and GH¢ 674 each for the construction and rehabilitation of dug-outs and dams, for irrigation to promote farming.
They are expected to participate in the construction of a new or rehabilitation of a broken dam or dug-out and in return receive cash reward from the WFP.
The programme supported selected communities to either rebuild damaged assets, such as mini dams and dug-outs or construct new ones, as a means to improve the livelihood of the beneficiaries, and to strengthen the communities’ resilience to climate change shocks.
Disbursing the monies after a visit to the beneficiary communities, the Country Director of the WFP, Ms. Mutinta Chimuka, said the asset creation project was to help people acquire assets deemed to have the potential to improve their livelihood as well as food security and nutritional needs.
She said some of these people, who dwelt in highly degraded environments, were the poorest with no food security, and needed assets to help them improve their welfare.
Ms. Chimuka said more than 5,000 households across the country had received a total amount of about GH¢2.2 million through the initiative and had all completed work on their projects.
She explained that, her outfit introduced the asset creation model after a market assessment of the earlier initiative dubbed the Food for Work Project had revealed that cash payment offered the beneficiaries the choice of varying their nutritional needs.
Ms. Chimuka said because agriculture remained the future of the country, the WFP had been partnering the district assemblies and the private sector, to ensure the success of the asset creation programme.
He said the links between agriculture and good nutrition were inseparable and “the way forward is to construct more and larger dams, which can be used for irrigation, as well as build fish ponds to provide the protein needs of the people.”
Ms. Chimuka said the project helped to check rural-urban migration of the youth to the southern part of the country, because the dug-outs and dams provided the opportunity for dry season farming.
He said there was the need to construct more and bigger dams to support irrigation of land and also promote aquaculture.
Madam Mariama Seidu, a beneficiary of the project, who received a cheque for GH¢ 640, for participating in the construction of a new dam at Nabugubelle, thanked the WFP for the initiative, which she said would help improve the living condition of the people.
The chairman of the asset creation committee of WFP in Nabugubelle, Mr. Shaibu Bafuochal, urged the district assembly to construct more dams in the area to promote agriculture.
From Cliff Ekuful, Nabugubelle