• May 19, 2023

ILO Provides 8M€ Decent Jobs Creation Platform

ILO Provides 8M€ Decent Jobs Creation Platform
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By Henry Kargbo

The International Labour Organization (ILO) in partnership with Sierra Leone Local Content Agency (SLLCA), Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEA), Sierra Leone Chamber for Agribusiness and Apex Bank has on Wednesday 17th May 2023 launched decent job creation platform for Sierra Leoneans.

The ceremony took place at the Radisson Blue Hotel, Aberdeen in Freetown. The Country Director of ILO, Vanessa Phala disclosed that ILO stands ready to spend Eight Million Euros on job creation platform for Sierra Leoneans.

She said that the platform is geared towards facilitating trainings for the creation of decent jobs for three thousand women and youth in rural communities across Sierra Leone.

The ILO Country Director noted that they had already started the implementation of the scheme by providing jobs for one thousand women, youth and persons with disabilities.

“With partnership, eight private businesses have yielded three hundred jobs with the potential to create an additional one thousand three hundred (1,300) existing jobs by December 2023” she stated.

She continued, to further increase market access and value addition opportunities for youths and women through cooperative. Cooperzione Internazonale (COOPI) had already trained twenty-seven individuals, who in turn would train assigned groups in four districts including, Bo, Port Loko, Bombali and Kenema districts in the areas of cultivating cassava, palm-oil and vegetables.

Madam Phala assured the media and participants that the platform will cast a wide net to all the districts and identify entrepreneurial talents, nurture them, provide opportunities for investors, marketing and support the creation of decent jobs by piloting value chain financing across four districts.

“Our partners have already outlined the components of the training, as we stand ready to make this model of business ecosystem successful and to demonstrate that our complex socio-economic problems are better solved through well-coordinated multilateral efforts,” she said, and adds, “It is our sincere hope that this platform can grow to provide both entrepreneurs and investors the opportunity to interface for mutual benefit and decent job creation,” she told the August gathering.

On “Women for Water and Peace Project,” she disclosed that the project intends to strengthen the participation of women in conflict resolution mechanisms at community levels, increase economic self-reliance, improve decent livelihood opportunities, strengthen gender equality, and enhance social cohesion.

The ILO Country Director furthered that the project will be implemented through two key objectives; that is; sources of water related disputes, notably around water scarcity and access, identify and reduce through the promotion of gender sensitive civic spaces, as women are empowered to become agent of change through inclusive and sustainable livelihood opportunities, contributing to strengthening social cohesion and peace.

She the project will support water infrastructure, empower women to create and operate small businesses and promote their role as agents of change and peace.

The Apex Bank representative, Mohamed Bangura said they are working with ILO for youths to have access to decent job creation in the country, adding that Apex bank have been supporting rural poor in banking, referring to such support as a blessing to Apex Bank.

Representatives from Sierra Leone Local Content Agency (SLLCA), Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEA), Sierra Leone Chamber for Agribusiness made valuable contributions at the unveiling of the scheme.

The event was climaxed by the signing of Implementation Agreement of Decent Job Creation Platform.

Sources have it that the International Labour Organisation had successfully conducted a peace and conflict analysis with mapping of conflict drivers and existing resilience mechanisms, trained women’s group organizations and leaders on conflict management and mitigation.

ILO, this medium was told had also supported the formation of Community Based social dialogue platforms in all 5 project communities in Dwazark, Rokupa, Mayinkeneh, Aberdeen, Crab Town and Lumley.

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