Increasing Fish Production – Youth Ministry, FAO Launch Fish Ponds in Cape Mount County
Grand Cape Mount County – Liberia’s Deputy Minister for Youth Development at the Ministry of Youth and Sports says the involvement of women in self-initiatives is important in the enhancement of the country strives to reduce poverty.
Report by: Willie N. Tokpah – [email protected]
Lance Gbagonyou told a group of women from Bomi and Grand Cape Mount Counties that the willingness of women and youth to take another dimension in food production for commercial activities in Liberia will enhance economic growth in the country.
“In Liberia, it’s very strange to find a group of young people and women to do jobs voluntarily, mainly in Cape Mount and Bomi, so thank you. By coming to work is a boost to the aquaculture project and the Ministry of Youth and Sports,” Gbagonyou said.
He named the establishment of a large scale fishpond by women and youth from both counties as a demonstration of their eagerness to take development initiatives on their own.
The establishment of fishpond in Grand Cape Mount County is an aquaculture project initiated by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in partnership with the Ministry of Youth and Sports under the theme, ‘reducing poverty among Liberians youth through aquaculture enterprise.’
Speaking Tuesday at the launch of an aquaculture project in Grand Cape Mount County, he emphasized the need for women and youth who have been trained in fish production to use the skill to impart knowledge into others.
“The training you have received must be spread to others and you should not just sit and relax. You must now begin to expand the aquaculture project in not only Grand Cape Mount County but other surrounding counties”, Gbagonyou maintained.
The Deputy Youth and Sports Minister said he wants the people of Grand Cape Mount County not to be relaxed about the scale of fishpond initiated by the FAO in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth and Sports but must embark on the creation of more.
Making remarks, FAO Monitoring and Evaluation Consultant, Martin Vanderknaap, said the aquaculture project is his entity’s way of using water sources to increase food production across Liberia.
He expressed delight over investment in water and the need for community dwellers to take the security of the pond important, owing to the fact that it was their labor.
“There are plans to expand the project to the end of 2016 in enabling citizens understand that aquaculture is profitable”, Vanderknaap told the group of trainees Tuesday.
He pointed out challenges in maintaining the fish due to improper feeding and as such the fishes were not receiving their requisite food in order to grow faster and well.
The FAO Monitoring and Evaluation Consultant warned caretakers of the pond not to fetch fish that have not reached the satisfactory growth recommended by the trainers but to rather introduce a balance system that will determine their fetching stage.
Vanderknaap also named aquaculture as another way of increasing food production saying,
“We are always concentrating on the production of too many cassava, maize, rice and etc., now is time for fish, our time for the water. The fish production is good.”
Moreover, Citizens of Grand Cape Mount and Bomi Counties participating in the aquaculture training say, they are moved in taking another dimension of food production from too many items like cassava, corn and rice to investment in aquaculture, the production of fish.
The citizens said, they intend using the water as a source of wealth by investing in fish production for commercial activities, since bulks of their colleagues are highly devoted to planting of cassava and other carbohydrate food.