Mr Isaac Finya Yarafa


By Sarah Mudwa

The Nigeria for Women Project has begun moves to improve the lives and livelihood of Nigerian women around six geo political zones in the country.

The project is a Federal Government project supported by the World Bank and implemented as a pilot project in 6 states of Taraba, Kebbi, Niger, Abia, Ogun and Akwa Ibom states. States are co-sponsors of the project as they provide matching funds for the smooth operations of the project.

In an interaction with our correspondents in Jalingo, the Coordinator of the Taraba State chapter of the Project, Mr Isa’ac Finya Yarafa said the main objective of the project is to improve the livelihood of women from age 18 and above, giving them the opportunity to be self-sufficient.

‘We are uplifting these women through women affinity group. These women are self-selected. Here, we cover three LGAs, Wukari, Takum and Zing. We have facilitators in each LG. Each group has a minimum of 15 to 25 women. They are registered by our facilitators, they meet every week and we help them build their capacity.
‘They embark on savings and our facilitators educate them on how to use their savings. At the end of the year they share their savings and the interests and begin another one with a new leadership. And you cannot join if you don’t have an income generating activity. We give them saving box and materials for them to document their activities.
“They save weekly and they have full control over their money, so we just basically assist them on how to manage their activities, get loans and recover the loans.

“They have training like life skills, financial skills, financial education. Our target is 54,000 women in Taraba and we have about 50000 already.” He said

He also added that they take advantage of the meetings to address some social norms through community dialogues. The project also supports the women with little grants to boost their businesses so as to enhance their productivity.
On some of the challenges the project is faced with, Isaac said the program was meant to last for five years but no thanks to the Covid 19 Pandemic, they have wasted close to two years already.
Meanwhile, the Taraba state government is giving counterpart funding to the project as well as providing office accommodation and logistics.

Yarafa said the government has been helpful and supportive


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