The Lagos Government, through the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA), says 10,385 vulnerable women have benefitted from its Micro-Enterprise Support Initiative (MESI) since 2019.
Mrs Bolaji Dada, the Lagos State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, made this known during an empowerment programme held in Lagos on Thursday.
She said that MESI was an intervention programme designed for vulnerable and indigent residents across the state, irrespective of social status, religion, health status or political beliefs.
“Today, we are empowering beneficiaries with working tools through our social intervention programme.
“This is an initiative which aims to ensure that participants are empowered to be self-reliant so that they can support their families and contribute their quota towards the Greater Lagos vision.
“This has been on since 2019 till date, 10, 385 across all Local Governments and Local Council Development Area’s in the state,” she said.
She reiterated WAPA’s commitment to easing the plights of women, in a bid to transform them into highly resourceful persons who are financially capable and self-dependent.
The commissioner called on the unemployed to enrol in any of the tuition-free 20 Skills Acquisition Centres in the state to benefit from the over 20 vocations for a duration of six to 12 months.
“The focal point of the initiative remains the grassroots level and WAPA is unwavering in its efforts to financially liberate many community dwellers through its numerous empowerment programmes,” she noted.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs Oluyemi Kalesanwo, stated that WAPA would not relent in its drive to empower vulnerable women, through its various initiatives and skills acquisition centres.
“WAPA remains dedicated to the empowerment of youths and women, as such, the State Government has intensified its efforts to drastically alleviate poverty and curb all forms of Sexual and Gender-based Violence” she said.
One of the beneficiaries, Rofiat Keshinro, who received a hair dryer equipment, applauded WAPA for its commitment towards the empowerment of women and encouraged beneficiaries to properly utilize the equipment given to them.
“I am grateful to WAPA for this programme.
“I urge my fellow beneficiaries to properly use the equipment we have been given to excel in our chosen businesses and become people who do not depend on others to survive,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that various empowerment items such as grinding machines, deep freezers, sewing machines, Hair-dryers, barber kits with sterilizers and generators were given to 1500 beneficiaries.
Others include popcorn machines, photography equipment, tile cutting machines and more.
Beneficiaries of WAPA’s snail farming training were also equipped with snail pens and 40 snails each to aid in starting their business.