By Tobias Lengnan Dapam
The European Union, Mercy Corps, and Save the Children launched key programmes to reduce the Impact of COVID-19 projects in Damaturu, Yobe state.
Save the Children in a statement issued yesterday, said the launch which held on March 10th, 2021 in collaboration with the Yobe State Government will bring together Yobe State Government representatives, European Union representatives, international non-governmental organisations, civil society organisations, and senior government officials to highlight and present key programme deliverables that will address the impact of COVID-19 across three LGAs in Yobe.
The statement said, the kick-off event will respond to an urgent need to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the most vulnerable households.
“A recent study by Mercy Corps and Save the Children shows that most households in Yobe have reported economic hardship due to the reduce income and food insecurity.
“In response to this need, with funding from the European Union, Mercy Corps and Save the Children will be implement the Reducing the Impact of COVID-19 project. This two-year project will benefit nearly 5,000 households (direct programme participants) by strengthening government and communities to respond to and recover from the impact of the pandemic and to building resilience to future shocks. This includes; strengthening social protection systems and working with the State Social Registry.”
The Head of the EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ambassador Ketil Karlsen said on this occasion: “It is an EU priority to help Nigeria address the impact of COVID 19 on the most vulnerable. To date, the European Union and its Member States are leading the COVID 19 response as we can witness with the recent arrival of the almost 4 million COVAX vaccines which should target frontline health workers as a priority. This is a landmark moment and another illustration of EU´s support to Nigeria and Yobe State to respond to the needs of those affected by the pandemic”.
According to Mercy Corps Nigeria’s Country Director, Ndubisi Anyanwu, “It is critical that we take time to examine what works, as well as the challenges, when it comes to ensuring that households have the skills, social networks, and opportunities needed to thrive in their daily lives. This kick-off will be a great opportunity for stakeholders in Yobe to support the project objectives, which seek to ensure vulnerable and conflict-affected households have restored and improved livelihoods that are more resilient to conflict and climate shocks and stresses.”
Ms. Mercy Gichuhi, Country Director, Save the Children International Nigeria said, “The project is aimed at developing and strengthening economic livelihoods and market systems to ensure the inclusion, production and resilience of the most vulnerable households – through vocational skills training, livelihoods assistance and establishment of voluntary saving and loan associations. Save the Children will exert its utmost efforts towards early recovery from the impact of COVID-19 to build the community’s resilience to future shocks.
“Furthermore, the project will strengthen Yobe’s social safety net, and provide opportunities to enhance the capacity of child-led community forums, and strengthen their participation in community awareness for the protection of children.”