From David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
In many communities, many indigent persons abound who look up to people that have crossed over the poverty line to come to their aid.
In a community like Ozubulu in Ekwusigo Local Government Area of Anambra State, for instance, a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) under the aegis of Odu and Gold Igboegwu Trust Fund Centre, Amakwa Ozubulu, has been on poverty alleviation mission in the area with widows, other women and youths as major beneficiaries.
Since its inception in 2013, over 400 indigent widows and other women in Ozubulu have been empowered and are now able to take care of themselves and their immediate families.
This was disclosed by the Executive Director of the NGO, Lady Alfreda Oruche (Adadioranma) during the recent empowerment programme of the group in Ozubulu.
In the latest edition, 35 indigent persons received training on how to make body cream, perfume, disinfectants, neckless, beaded bags, foot wears and other items.
According to Lady Oruche, the founder of the NGO, Engr Gold Igboegwu said he was drawn into setting up the foundation due to high level of poverty the rural dwellers experience.
She said that Engr Igboegwu had made it clear that he was not doing the poverty alleviation programme for any political reason, but “only for the love he has for his people.”
She said that what qualifies one to be a beneficiary was that one must be a widow or a needy in Ozubulu, poiting out that it was not meant for those who have visible means of livelihood.
Lady Oruche said she was committed to the success of the programme to ensure that those targeted were the actual beneficiaries since the founder was not home-based.
Chairman of Board of Trustees of the NGO, His Lordship, Martin Igwe Uzoukwu, Bishop of Minna Catholic Diocese commended the founder and called on others who were well-to-do in the society to emulate the gesture.
Bishop Uzoukwu advised the beneficiaries to be very appreciative of the gesture and not to toy with the opportunity.
A member of the BoT, Chief Anthony Oguegbunam, told the beneficiaries to be prudent in managing the seed money given to them at the end of their training, adding that it was not for new clothes, dance outing or any other frivolity.
“Manage the money well so that when you return it others will benefit. It is a revolving loan for the indigents and poor people in Ozubulu,” he explained. He said over N2.5million had been spread on the four quarters that make up Ozubulu community for the empowerment programme.
He explained that each of the beneficiaries was given about N50,000 to start up her business which he said must be backed up by their guarantors.
He made it clear that the money was expected to be returned after a period of one year for others to benefit.
In the same vein, another member of the BoT, Chief Gozie Malizu, a retired Assistant Commissioner of Police, revealed that there were other developmental projects, including provision of pipe-borne water for the community lined up by the foundation, saying that he was highly impressed.
He noted that graduates of the skill acquisition programme were given certificates besides the empowerment after their training.