The Australian High Commission in Ghana is assisting 20 organisations from seven African countries with a total of 900,000 Australian dollars to undertake various development projects in their respective countries.
It is being done under the Direct Aid Programme (DAP), a development assistance initiative by the Australian government and administered by that country’s diplomatic missions around the world.
The beneficiaries who are from Ghana, Togo, Liberia, Mali, Guinea, Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire are to undertake community-focused projects in the areas of skills development, disability, water, sanitation and hygiene among others.
At the launch of the 2019 DAP in Accra Tuesday, the Australian High Commissioner in Ghana, Andrew Barnes said the beneficiaries were chosen based on the areas of their project and the impact it would have on the people in their operational areas.
“We have a focus on gender issues and disability, as well as WASH and sanitation. So particularly, that is what we wanted to support,” he said.
The High Commissioner asked the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the funds provided, noting officials of the programme will be monitoring the various projects.
He said the beneficiaries are required at the end of their projects, to provide pictorial evidence.
He underscored the Commission’s commitment to supporting the provision of life-transforming projects for vulnerable people in society.
“We look forward to working with you on these projects and to achieving many positive outcomes together, for the benefit of targeted communities and the countless individuals who are counting on us in order to better lives,” Mr. Barnes said.
Under this year’s programme, the Ghana Australia Alumni Association will provide logistics and capacity building support for the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit.
Also, the ‘Fair Justice Initiative’ which is a beneficiary, will provide skills training for female inmates at the Nsawam Prison in the Greater Accra Region.
Inmates at the prison, the Director of Programme at Fair Justice, Rosie Worster observed, “face stigma against incarceration, and that means quite often, they are unable to pay for essential bills.
“We are focused on their re-integration back to society. So we are looking at equipping them with some skills that they can use when they get back,” Worster stated.
A representative from ‘Camp for Peace’ in Liberia, Pedelers Craig, also said they will use the grants to provide some basic amenities for public schools in Liberia.
“We are constructing five latrines in Monrovia in Liberia. We work with public schools in Liberia in mostly rural areas of the country. Being a post-war country, we need programmes for some affected youth.”
The Direct Aid Programme (DAP) is a development assistance program funded from Australia’s aid budget and administered by Australian diplomatic missions around the world.
Since it was started in 2004 by the High Commission in Africa, hundreds of communities in the nine African countries under the Commission’s accreditation have benefited.
By Irene Amesimeku| 3news.com|Ghana