By Ndey Sowe
Violence Against Girls in collaboration with the National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC), with funding from the Migration and Sustainable Development in The Gambia (MSDG), recently launched a new project called: “Skills Empowerment of Women in The Arts and Heritage” for women, especially young girls in Barra, Juffureh, and Albreda communities in the North Bank Region.
The project is to enable them to acquire the necessary skills that can make them self-reliant to curb going through the backway journey to Europe.
Presiding on the launching of the project, Prof Gibril Faal, the Project Director and Co-partner of GK Partners for the MSDG, expressed delight over the launching of the program alongside his partner, Katherine Ford, Co-Founder/Partner of GK Partners.
He explained that they heard about the program through their partner, NCAC which has been working with the group of these young determined girls and women that have expressed their minds not to go back on the backway journey but ready to learn skills and stay back in their respective communities.
“We are impressed with that and we also know that everybody needs help from someone. So, Violence Against Girls is already on the ground providing support in the form of training and mentoring, therefore, we have decided to assist the young girls through Violence Against Girls with support from NCAC to enable them realise their dreams,” Prof Faal expressed.
He said GK Partners through MSDG will try to see that when Violence Against Girls gets results they will try to find more resources to assist because “we are very interested, particularly, in the weaving training.”
Marketing their products, he urged them not to limit it to only Barra, Juffure/Albreda communities but across the country “for us, we are pleased to see you here and on behalf of myself and Katherine Ford, the Co-Founder/Partner of GK Partners thank you for the determination.”
Dumbeh Saho, the Country Director of the MSDG introduced the GK Partners, Prof Gibril Faal, and Katherine Ford, who have been supporting the Migration and Sustainable Development in The Gambia (MSDG).
She said “MSDG is proud to be part of those that are supporting and empowering women and improving their lives and livelihoods.
“And we are happy that the support has gone a long way to improve your livelihoods and we want to advise you to take it very seriously, and we are looking forward to more collaboration,” she advised.
Pa Musa Sidibeh, Associate Director of Migration and Sustainable Development in The Gambia thanked Alkalo, VDC Chairman, and also congratulated the trainees on the project.
Mamat Sallah, Assistant Director for Museum and Monuments thanked GK Partners and dilated on the role of NCAC in the project saying the centre is here to support the Violence Against Girls on the project and other projects related to arts and culture.
He disclosed that Violence Against Girls is doing a great job on the skills as the cultural sector is concerned, and they are here to support them technically.
Mamat Sallah, on behalf of the DG of NCAC, thanked MSDG for supporting the Violence Against Girls group and the entire cultural sector and especially the youth and young women in the Gambia.
Adama Jatta, CEO/Founder of Violence Against Women thanked the MSDG for funding and supporting the group while expressing delight about the Project Director and Co-partner of GK Partners being in attendance to launch the program.
She explained that Violence Against Girls is set up to empower women through skills and “with arts and creativity you can become self-reliant.”
She highlighted the group activities which included discouraging young girls from going through a backway journey to Europe, and skills training among others.
On this project, she said apart from the weekdays training, every weekend applicant from Barra, Juffureh, and Albreda that are free can come to the centre for further training
The training package she said includes tie and dye, batik, weaving, soap making, and so on.
The Alkalo of Juffureh, VDC Chairman, and Fatou, one of the trainees also made speeches at the launching.