The Global Facility/Small Grant Programme (GEF/SGP) says it has spent $30,000 U.S. dollars on the execution of a project in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River.
National Coordinator of GEF/SGP, Mrs. Ibironke Olubamise, said this, on Tuesday, in an interview, in Abuja.
Olubamise said that Peace Point Action (PPA), an NGO, handled the execution of the project at the creek beach of the community, while United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and GEF/SGP funded the project.
She said that the project was aimed at training the community on how to build its capacity in initiating sustainable livelihood alternatives and reduce the pressure on the forest.
“The project focused specifically on women and youths, including the physically-challenged in the community.
“The project will reduce mangrove forest loss through sustainable income generating activities such as the establishment of snail farms.
“The community is primarily reliant upon wood logging, fishing and small-scale farming as its major source of livelihood.
“Due to logging and clearing of farmland, most forests are being encroached; thus contributing immensely to the problems of climate change in the community,’’ she said.
The coordinator said that through the project, 100 community members had been trained on how to construct fuel efficient wood stoves, so as to serve as an alternative source of livelihood.
Olubamise said that the project would build the capacity of the community to support ongoing efforts to curtail deforestation.
She said that the project had also empowered the community on forest conservation, while boosting their commitment toward the sustainable management of the mangrove forest.
According to her, the GEF/SGP serves as a financial mechanism for several multilateral environmental conventions that cover most global environmental issues.
She said that the focus of GEF/SGP includes accelerating action against biodiversity loss, climate change, deforestation, degradation of international water bodies, land degradation and chemical pollution. (NAN)