BRAC Liberia Graduates Adolescents in Livelihood Skills Training
MARGIBI – BRAC-Liberia has graduated several vulnerable adolescents under the auspices of its Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescent (ELA) project in Kakata, Margibi County.
Report by Yawah Y. Jaivey, Contributor
The ELA Project is being held under the theme: “Empowering vulnerable adolescent for positive living.”
The program took place on Wednesday, March 20, 2019 with 58 adolescents being certificated after the successful completion of three months of intensive training in livelihood skills development in the areas of Tie and Dye, Pastry and Hair Dressing.
The Acting Country Representative of BRAC-Liberia, Madam Aisha Nansamba, said that the Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescent project (ELA) is basically focused on enhancing the economic and social empowerment of adolescents to overcome challenges and further contribute towards reduction in teenage pregnancy.
She revealed that BRAC Liberia as an international Organization is operating in nine Counties with six programs which includes Education, Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescents, Microfinance, Food Security & Livelihoods, Health and Ultra Poor Graduation.
She said what is common among their programs is that they are so much interested in capacity building and their focus is to provide skills with a special emphasis to women empowerment.
Speaking on the Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescent (ELA) program, the Acting Country Representative said that the program has over time managed to provide livelihoods training to 378 Adolescents across the 4 counties.
“These efforts are intended to create supportive environment for the development of adolescent girls at the household and community levels. BRAC believes in women empowerment because when you train a woman you have trained the entire society so we hope that there can be a multiplier effect.” Madam Nansamba asserted.
The BRAC Country Rep. stated: “We’ve also realized that the ELA program has impact on the perceptions, and attitudes towards gender stereotypes among the adolescents that we worked with. For instance, the girls were 18% more likely to have positive attitudes towards gender roles.”
She added that the BRAC ELA program also reduced teenage pregnancy by 5% among the girls who were covered, which was a key milestone.
She, however, admonished the graduates especially the females to translate the knowledge acquired into action in order to be productive future citizens and equally contribute to the attainment of their full potential.
Giving the overview of BRAC Liberia ELA program, the Project Manager, Mrs. Thelma Foley Nagbe said the Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescent (ELA) program started its operation since 2014 in two counties (Margibi and Monsterrado) and in 2016 scale up to additional two counties (Bong and Grand Cape Mount) from where they currently operate in 60 communities.
She said BRAC’s program for the adolescent doesn’t only provide livelihood training, but it also provides life skills with a common understanding that the life skills will help the adolescents communicate, build leadership skills and interact with the adults, adding that it is meant to increase self-esteem.
Mrs. Nagbe noted that the program in partnership with LOIC from October to December 2018, provided one hundred ninety eight (198) vulnerable adolescent with marketable livelihood skills in Quilt making, Custom jewelries, Hair dressing, soap making, pastry, and tie and dye within its 4 operating counties-Bong, Montserrado, Grand Cape Mount and Margibi.
She said BRAC through the ELA program is thankful to the communities they work in and has realized that the adolescents who are attending the program activities come from the willingness of the parents to allow them to go and empower themselves.
At the same time, Representative Ellen Attoh-Wreh expressed her impression over the training proffered by BRAC-Liberia to the vulnerable adolescents.
Serving as guest speaker at the graduation, the Margibi County Electoral District#3 Lawmaker said she is impressed due to the fact that BRAC is into helping the vulnerable adolescent because she knows what it means to be able to impact knowledge into the younger ones.
She admonished the graduates to implement the skills acquired and help with the transformation process of their society.
She, however, promised to support the graduates and other future initiatives of BRAC-Liberia, especially programs that would be helpful to young people of her district and Margibi County.
BRAC having originated from Bangladesh is one of the biggest development organizations in the world. It begins its operations in 2008 in Liberia.