A Short Report on the 2017 Empowerment and Poverty Alleviation Programme

The Widows Empowerment and Poverty Alleviation Programme of the Iwoland Development Coalition held on May 13, 2017 at the Iwo City Hall, Iwo. Organised in conjunction with the Guildance Community Development Foundation, RAI Foundation, Olawale Rasheed Foundation and Team Olodo Oba was attended by people from all walks of life.

The programme began with registration of potential beneficiaries in attendance and distribution of customised shirts. This was followed by opening prayer said in Islamic and Christian ways. Iwo Anthem and pledge was recited after this. The MC Engr Shu’aib Alabi introduced special guests and invited them to the high table. The special guests so introduced included Oba Abdulrasheed Adewale Akanbi, Otunba Adebayo Waliu Rovet, High Chief Kunle, Alabi, Iyaafin Folake Aremu ‘OrisaBunmi’, Mrs Yetunde Ogunsola, Honourable Mudashiru Toogun, Professor Bashir Aremu and Mr Liad Olaiya.

Mr Adisa Kabiru Kulukulu FCA, the Coordinator of Iwoland Development Coalition subsequently came on stage to deliver his welcome address. He used the opportunity to explain the rationale behind the programme, saying ‘’we as charitable people have a role to play in ensuring that no widow or orphan go to bed without food. We have to evolve a system that would take care of people with little or no resources of their own.’’ Mr Adisa also explained that the empowerment programme is two-pronged: short term relief in food materials and long term support in machines and equipment for business.

Representatives of the collaborating organizations also took turns to deliver speeches on the rationale behind the programme and on its future.

Otunba Waliyulah Oladosu also addressed the occasion, encouraging everyone to contribute to the continuation of the empowerment programme. Another special guest, Hon Mudathir Toogun congratulated the organisers for organising the event and expressed his happiness that the young ones are taking over community development as exemplified by IDC. He also pointed out the windows empowerment programme is also in line with the aspiration of the Osun State government to support widows in the state.

A poetry performance interlude by Orisa Bunmi followed the speeches. His Royal Majesty Oba AbdulRasheed Adewale Akanbi made a grand, royal entrance into the event, with Orisa Bunmi and Mr Waheed Olalekan and Mr Akinboye Olabanji welcoming the king with the panegyric performance of Iwoland. In his characteristic erudition addressed the audience. He also advised the beneficiaries not to be wary of good loan to build their business, saying developed countries’ economies were built on credit. He emphasized the importance of taking risk including good loan to build one’s business and ensuring the repayment of the loan according to agreement.

The royal speech and prayer opened way for the distribution of the relief materials to widows with the special guests taking turn to present the materials to the widows.

The programme was huge success and beneficiaries were full of praises for the organizers. Materials distributed are: Category one: Food item: 14 bags of rice to about 300 widows.

  • Category 1: Ointment to 50 widows
  • Category 2: 4 different health books to 250 widows : caring for children age 0 to 6 months,  caring for children age 2 to 5 years and so on
  • Category 3: 9 different types of clothes like T shirts, polo, Cardigans, sport wears etc
  • Category 4: Vocational materials like sewing machines, corn/pepper grinding machine and hairdressing dryers machines.
  • Category 5: Cash Donation to 4 widows who are aged. N5,000 each to 2 widows and N2,500 each to another widows

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