GUYANA, DPI/GINA, Monday, June 5, 2016
The Ministry of Social Protection’s newly launched Self-Sufficient Agricultural Economic Services Project at the Hugo Chavez Centre at Onverwagt, West Coast Berbice will enable residents to enjoy some level of independence by providing for themselves.
The Minister of Social Protection, Amna Ally said that her Ministry is tasked with providing food and shelter among other necessities for children, adults, persons who are physically challenged and victims of domestic violence through various homes and centres. The Self-Sufficient Agricultural Economic Services Project was launched to support these services.
The Minister highlighted, at the commissioning ceremony some of the components of the Economic Services Centre. These include, “three fish ponds and already 2000 fingerlings eating away for harvest in a couple of weeks, four pens, one for creole fowls, ducks, sheep and meat bird and a 100×30 green house where vegetables are planted. All of the pens have an initial amount of stock and we will expand overtime.” These will make the residents become more independent and become productive members of society.
Minister Ally noted the importance of being independent and not relying on the government to provide everything that is needed for the upkeep of the centres that houses inmates. Rather to establish a medium that can help to make self-sufficiency and provide adequate and cheap services
Last November former Minister of Social Protection, Volda Lawrence said that the residents are on their way to becoming entrepreneurs while some have been streamlined to seek employment outside of their organisations.
“They have begun to rear chickens; as a matter of fact they’re now selling eggs. They also have couple hundreds of ducks and they are now
providing that meat to various institutions. They’ve also acquired two sheep and next year, they’re looking at enlarging stock by building a new pen to start rearing more livestock so that they will be able to earn money for the residents who are there,” Minister Lawrence explained
Minister Ally expressed gratitude to members of the Guyana Livestock Development Authority (GLDA), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), National Agriculture Research and Extension Institute (NAREI), and Food for the Poor among others for their contributions to the Self-Sufficient Agricultural Economic Services Project.
“We have had meaningful and significant input from (these) organisations… thank you for your support.…not only did the organisations give support but I am extremely happy that many individuals give freely in cash and kind to see completion of this project,” Minister Ally explained. She noted that the Ministry is proud of this achievement and will endeavor to work for its sustainability and expansion.
The Minister of Social Protection emphasised that opportunities under the government will make it possible for Guyanese to enjoy the good life with efforts channeled in the right way.
The Hugo Chavez centre was constructed in 2013 with US$2M funding from Venezuela. It boasts recreational, medical centre, kitchen, conference room, training and dining facilities.
By: Ranetta La Fleur