The South Saharan Africa Social Development Organization (SSDO) has graduated 50 persons with disability after a three-month free Mobile Phone Repair and software installation Training at Umuleri, Anambra East Local Government Area , weekend.
Addressing the participants during the occasion, the Country Director of SSDO, Mrs Grace A. Nwobodo attributed the success of the event to the generous support of Oxfam Novib, and Office of the wife of the governor of Anambra State , Chief Mrs Ebelechukwu Obiano, who cared and provided the building for the training and accommodation of the participants, and appreciated the care from the Council Chairmen of Anambra East and West local government Councils and Women Affairs and Social Development Ministry.
Each of the 50 graduands received a laptop, repair kits and seed fund to enable them support their business and eke out a living.
The beneficiaries include Kingsley Ezeadi, Paul Chioke, Okwudili Ume Okafor, Uchenna Ezu, Okonkwo Chukwudubem, Offor Nonso, Ngozi Obi, Doris Nwakwenyi and Ebere Aniekie.
Mrs Nwobodo bemoaned situation in Nigeria where 80 percent of the persons with disabilities live in low and middle income parts of the society and make a living from begging on the streets or support from family members.
She observed that the intervention by SSDO is in recognition that the many problems faced by PWDs can be addressed through employment and income generation, stressing that, if empowered, the beneficiaries can live full productive lives for the overall benefit of the society.
The Country Director pointed out that from the feedback, the participants were excited while the women expressed surprise that they could cope with the technical aspects of the training often times regarded as an exclusive preserve of the men, adding that the success story of the event proves beyond all reasonable doubt that there is ability in disability.
The wife of the governor also commissioned the CAFE Cares Vocational and Welfare Centre at Umuleri which houses computer laboratory, hair dressing sewing and bead making classrooms as well as male and female hostels, in addition to donating N500,000 to procure generating sets to source light for the business.
Speaking as the Special Guest of Honour at the Graduation and commissioning ceremonies, Chief Mrs Obiano thanked the Country Director of SSDO, Mrs Grace Chinegwundoh Nwobodo for bringing the training programme to Anambra State, stressing that the training for persons with disabilities is in line with the mission of her pet project, the Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFÉ
In an interview with newsmen, the wife of the Anambra East Local Government Council Chairman, Mrs Udeano thanked governor Obiano’s wife and Country Director of SSDO for bonding to make the empowerment programme possible for the benefit of the physically challenged who she said are often neglected and discriminated against in the society.
Mrs Udeano called on some other well meaning individuals and corporate bodies to emulate the good works of charity by CAFÉ and SSDO in order to improve the lots of the less privileged members of the society, stressing that the people of Anambra East Council Area will ever remain grateful to governor Obiano and his wife for the facelift given to the area in all sectors of life..
She commended her husband, governor Obiano Willie for his support and love to the physically challenged which, she said, is evident from his approval for the renovation of the abandoned party house to serve as a vocational and skill acquisition centre for the physically challenged, while thanking all others who contributed in various ways to get the place ready for the take-off of the training programme as well as the training facilitators.
Also speaking, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs Victoria Chikwelu thanked SSDO for partnering with the Ministry to organize the stressing that the commissioning of the centre is part of the Obiano administration to ensure that skill acquisition centres are brought closer to the people, adding that the Café Cares Vocational and Welfare Centre is among the best centres for the physically challenged persons in the South East zone with facilities well planned to enhance the free mobility of the persons with special needs.
In his remark, the President of the Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities, Comrade Ugochukwu Okeke thanked the governor’s wife and Country Director of SSDO for teaming up to make the training programme a huge success, adding that the physically challenged persons have benefitted from the governor Obiano administration more than all other governments in the past.
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