The Federal Government has again been urged to ensure implementation of the rights of widows as enshrined in the international law for their protection and wellbeing.
President, Helpline Foundation for the Needy, Dr Jumai Ahmadu made the call at a forum organized to train over 370 women in various skills to commemorate the International widows day(IWD) in Abuja.
Dr Jumai Ahmadu explained that ensuring the protection of their rights as enshrined in the laws of the convention and elimination of all forms of discrimination against them would be tantamount to taking holistic action geared towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Dr Ahmadu who stressed that supporting and protecting them would shield them from the ugly situations most widows in the country often experience, further called for medical care and educational support for their children and wards.
“The widows are Among the groups in the society mostly marginalized, denied access to common patrimony of their husbands, social and sexual abuse… their problems are poverty , violence, health related issues and conflicts related issues …we therefore call the attention of all relevant authorities to take the plight of this group of people seriously … including the convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women on the rights of the child” Ahmadu advocated.
Speaking on the theme of the training: “Sustainable Solutions For Widows Financial Independence” Dr Ahmadu represented by the Programme Manager of the Foundation, Mr Onoja Arome, said the Foundation has decided to teach them how to fish rather than giving them fish, adding that the knowledge garnered with little start up and God’s blessings could become a strong source of livelihood for the widows.
Her words:” today as part of our contribution to the lives of our Dear widows, through the support from friends, and well -wishers of our foundation, we shall be empowering 370 widows who will not take widowhood as a mental state but be ready to face the realities of life by engaging in our skill acquisition programs. This we believe will go a long way to enhance their livelihood and improve their self-confidence to face the future with their beloved children” Ahmadu said.
Earlier, the Leader and trainer in one of the Clusters, Miss Cecilia Kadiri urged the women to take the training seriously.
For the beneficiaries, drawn from Bwari, Gwagwalada, Kwali, Kuje ,Abaji area Councils it was an avalanche of gratitude and prayers for the Organisers.
One of the beneficiaries from a previous empowerment programme , Mrs Ifeoma Onuora said the training had turned her life around but however requested for a grant to expand the business.
“I have put to use the knowledge I acquired here. I have started baking , what I need now is a small grant to take off” she said
The women who were privileged to choose a skill they desired to learn, were trained on how to make Liquid soap, Aso- Oke weaving , Shoes and bags making, Gele tying, and varieties of snacks, among others.
By Remi Johnson