A humanitarian organisation, RESILAC, on Friday said it has trained and empowered about 300 youths on borehole drilling to promote irrigation farming and enhance potable water supply in three local government areas of Borno.
The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) reports that RESILAC is a four- year funded French Development Agency & European Union implemented by Action Against Hunger in the countries of Nigeria, Niger, Chad and the Extreme Northern region of Cameroon.
The National Coordinator of RESILAC Nigeria, Mr Muhammed Ahmed, disclosed this while distributing water pumps to 100 beneficiaries at Gongolon community in Jere Local Government Area of the state.
Ahmed said that the empowerment was aimed at increasing resilience and autonomy, particularly among young people who are prepared to invest in the economic recovery of the region.
“Today we empowered 100 beneficiaries in who underwent training and also provided equipment for borehole drilling for irrigation purposes.
“They will be able not just to irrigate their lands, but also, they will drill other boreholes in areas where there is no irrigation facilities provided,” he said.
He explained that similar intervention was carried out in three communities in Jere local government area, including Gongolon, Fariya and Kiribiri.
“A total of 272 hectares of land will now be irrigated in the dry season and farmers will be benefiting and they will have mutiples of crops cultivated on the land that was previously been used for rice farming during the raining season.
“RESILAC also focused on engaging communities through skills acquisition training. Right now these 300 beneficiaries that had been supported on borehole drilling are now going to be trained on vocational skills acquisition,” said Ahmed.
According to him, the beneficiaries will be trained in the areas of poultry, fisheries, tailoring and embroidery, among others, for the period of three months.
He added that after the training programme, each of the participants would receive start ups as resettlement package to enable them to further diversify their livelihood.
“This is a method that we want to create for the government so that if they want to support the youths, this is how it should be done,” he said.
The RESILAC Nigerian coordinator said that the programme would involve 90 000 direct beneficiaries and 1.6 million indirect beneficiaries from Nigeria and three other countries of the Lake Chad region.
Also speaking, Mr Baba Abba Hassan, the District Head of Khaddamari, lauded the organisation for supporting farming activities in the community which he said would go along way to uplift the living standard of people in his community.
“This is the type of projects we want in our communities, it is not cash given always. The youths can now be able to take care of themselves as well as the community,” he said.
Alhaji Alamin Sharrif, the Secretary of Jere Local Government Council, said that the community driven initiative would fast track development and restore commercial activities in the area.
He assured the organisation that government would set up a monitoring mechanism toward ensuring that the youths make use of the equipment for the purpose of developing the community.
In his remarks, Ajikolo Ibrahim-Khadi, member respresenting Jere constituency in Borno House of Assembly, lauded them for choosing Gongolon to launch the first phase of the programme.
Khadi noted that the intervenvention came at the hours of needs where support like this was needed the most, and urged them to extend the programme to other communities. (NAN)