By Fortune Abang
No Hunger Food Bank (NHFB) a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO), has empowered Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the New Kuchigoro camp with farm implements to ensure food security in the community.
Mrs Kumdet Longdi, Coordinator of NHFB Abuja branch while addressing the IDPs on Sunday at the camp, said it was not enough to provide food items but to empower them through farming.
According to her, the aim is to connect IDPs with nutritious food and to tackle drivers of hunger, such as poverty, lack of good education, joblessness, lack of access to healthcare and homelessness.
“We are here to empower women through backyard farming, which some of them have started already.
“We want to support government to eradicate hunger; there should be no food wastage and that is why we chose this community, because they are in dire need of support.
“We deemed it necessary to empower the women to enable them and their children afford three meals, at least in a day.
“The choice of farming is to also enable the women become self-reliant rather than always depend on donations; they can derive food from cultivating what they need at backyard farms.
“Some of them were farmers before now, but because of displacement, therefore the empowerment is to enable them relive their farming occupation,” she said.
Also speaking, Mr Philemon Emmanuel, Chairman of the IDP camp, expressed appreciation to NHFB for the initiative.
“We need space to farm, if NHFB or the Federal Government can provide more farms for us, we will be happy, it is what most of us were doing for a living in our villages.
“Most of us did not even go to school, because we solely depended on farming, we need organisations to provide place for us, since this place is not our village.
“There is no land to farm; although there is a small parcel of land near the river behind our batchers, if we can get help we want to farm, to afford at least what to eat,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mrs Ladi Paul, said that they had been living in the camp since 2014.
“We have challenges in the camp, no primary healthcare and school for our children; thank God for the support.
“Many of us came from villages without clothes; we had just wrappers that we ran with, some organisations brought things for us, and provided potable water and school for our children.
“Where we have challenge now is lack of primary healthcare, also we do not have adequate food and school in the camp,” Paul said.
The New Kuchigoro IDP camp has1,573 displaced persons comprising 690 children, 323 women and 560 men.