Income-generating activities support programme launched

Windhoek-To alleviate poverty among the unemployed in the Khomas Region, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare yesterday launched the Income Generating Activities (IGA) support programme operating guidelines for 2017-2020 in the capital.

The programme was launched by the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Gender Equality and and Child Welfare, Wilhencia Uiras, on behalf of Gender Equality Minister Doreen Sioka. She also handed over the IGA materials, and equipment to 12 beneficiaries in the region.

Sioka underlined that the programme being launched was developed to contribute to the socio-economic empowerment of communities, with a particular focus on women.

The guidelines of the programme are also envisaged to strengthen the implementation and management of community empowerment interventions, as well as foster coordination among stakeholders whose work contributes to economic empowerment of grassroots communities, she further said.

The guidelines contain key principles, such as women economic empowerment, skills training through the community empowerment centres, and women in business associations. The guidelines were developed with the assistance of Pact Namibia.

According to the minister, the programme is also aimed at encouraging needy urban and rural people, especially women, to participate in the programme in order to create self-employment and in some cases, employment for others. For this reason, she said, the ministry provided start-up materials and equipment, complemented by training in basic business management skills.

The ministry strongly believes that if IGA beneficiaries manage their businesses profitably, they will be earning an income, improve their livelihoods and alleviate poverty. Therefore, it is very important to note that profits accumulated from the project should be reinvested back into the business to ensure growth and sustainability.

Khomas Governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua said the IGA programme plays a crucial role in the advancement and upliftment of local people and mainly focuses on the upliftment of needy communities through the establishment of viable projects, linked to job creation and poverty reduction.

She further revealed that a total of 149 people in Khomas Region have so far benefitted from the IGA programme of the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare and said this was highly commendable.

The IGA programme is one of the longstanding economic empowerment interventions used by government to boost economic growth and social upliftment, she said.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia