Rivercess County Agriculture Coordinator has lauded the World Food Programme (WFP) in Liberia for "doing well for rural women farmers in the County towards attaining food security and strengthening community resilience".
Speaking in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County on Thursday at the start of a two-day seminar to train rural women in the operations of Community Food Reserves (CFR) or food banks, Madam Nora B. Kemokai said: "WFP is doing so well for rural women that we intend writing a letter to the Head of Mission of the organization to appreciate them for working so hard to empower rural women in Liberia."
The head of agriculture in Reivercess, nicknamed "Extension Queen", also praised WFP for providing knowledge, food assistance, and community food reserves or storage facilities women need to work for themselves.
WFP in collaboration with FAO, UNWOMEN and the Government of Liberia has organized four regional workshops to be held in Grand Bassa, Bong, Bomi, and Grand Gedeh counties respectively.
The training sessions are in part fulfillment of the objectives of two UN joint projects, the RWEE (rural women economic empowerment project and UN Human Security Trust Fund).
Outlining the relevance of the training for rural women development, WFP's National Programme Policy Officer Lonnie Herring said community food reserves will benefit rural women in many ways, including improved access (credit) - to food for women during lean (difficult or rainy) season when food shortage is high; stabilization of prices all year round since food will be stocked in warehouses (banks) managed by the women groups; improved leadership and management skills for women, among others.
Also known as Community Grain Reserves (CGRs), the facilities provide a safety net to offset the effects of seasonal shocks, by strengthening the resilience of vulnerable communities to reduce their own hunger through the enhanced management of their food stocks.
WFP is said to have established 23 Women managed Community Grain Reserves/banks (CGRs) in the 15 Counties, supporting 18,000 households through the provision of storage facilities (warehouses) and its associated elements including a drying floor, hand pump and toilets.
The training sessions are being facilitated by a local food security organization - Volunteers to Support International Efforts in Developing Africa (VOSIEDA).