A Non-Governmental Organization, (NGO), the Clifford Amede Global Foundation, CAGF, has embarked on a support and empowerment programme to enhance the quality of Education for students and also provide some self-help support equipment for the women in the rural community of Ughevwughe, in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State.
The support programme which was carried out in the first and second quarters of 2018, involved the donation of educational materials to the students of Ughevwughe primary and secondary schools as well as providing the specialized Cassterva grinding machines to aid the women of the community prepare their grains like Corn, Cassava, Millet. Beans and other farm produce, either for sale or local consumption, with greater ease instead of travelling the several kilometres to the more cosmopolitan city of Ughelli, to do their grinding.
Founder of the Foundation, Mr. Amede Clifford Akpobevwu, who has been travelling round the community to deliver the educational materials to the students and also carry out the assistance programme to the women, explained that the purpose of provision of educational materials to the school children is to support the efforts of the Delta State Government and the administration of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, in its objective of providing qualitative education for the young one, by reaching out to the hinterlands and rural communities where it is sometimes difficult for bureaucracies and government presence to be felt by the children in these areas.
Mr. Clifford further noted that Ughvwughe primary and secondary schools were the only two institutions of its kind in the whole area and has historically addressed the educational needs of the people over the years and produced many top individuals in the public and private sectors, whose humble beginnings were formed in the schools located in the community.
“It is therefore a great act of service not only in ensuring the sustenance of this great citadel of early education in the community but also giving the young ones who are presently being educated in Ughevwughe a sense of historical belonging and encouraging them to aspire to be like their predecessors who have achieved national fame and success despite their humble beginnings from Ughevwughe primary and secondary schools,” he said during one of such donation visitations.
Mr. Clifford, who equally spoke on another occasion, where the CAG Foundation donated the specialized Cassava Grinding Machines to the women of Ughevwughe and Sapele communities, noted that the women of the communities, who were very hard working and industrious, had over the years been hampered by the non-provision of functional aids to support their manual endeavours and had yearned for things like grinding machines and other existential support amenities to make life easier for them.
“The Empowerment of women in need have recently taken the center stage of our short term goals and in the course of our frequent visitations and interactions with the women of Ughevwughe, we have discovered that they are very industrious and have taken their main pre-occupation of subsistence farming seriously, expending great energy and labour all through the farming season and at harvest time have had to travel the long distance of several kilometres to Ughelli, the nearest cosmopolitan city to grind and prepare their maize and other grains for sale and personal consumption. They had earnestly yearned for these grinding machines and indeed other welfare amenities, and with the provision of the machines they have been saved much labour and it will also increase and attract more commerce to boost the small scale economy of the community”
Speaking further, the founder of CAG Foundation stressed that Ughevwughe community was a very rural community, which has had its fair share of challenges and environmental hazards caused by oil spill and pollution which has taken its toll on the economy of the area and forced able bodied youths out on economic migration thus leaving behind a vulnerable population of vulnerable women, children and the aged to fend for themselves in the harsh environment.
“Oil spillage have periodically occurred in the area and resulted in fire outbreaks that have devastated and left long lasting damage to the farmlands and environment of the rural communities especially Ughevwughe, which has affected several kilometers of the delicate ecosystem of wetlands along the river that runs through the territory. These disasters have caused un-quantifiable damage to animal and plant life. Irreplaceable biodiversity has been wiped and thousands of people have over the years become economic refugees. This Community has suffered some of the worst environmental disasters to happen in Urhobo country of Delta state in the over 50 years of oil exploration and this has become a herculean challenge to the people and their existence,” Mr. Clifford said.
According to him, “Our Mission is to support the less privileged ones in remote, rural communities and our Society by providing free medical, educational and relief assistance to them. Our objective and vision is to make a positive difference in the lives of women and youths, by providing support, assistance and empowerment within and outside our communities. We have over the years offered support to those in need and our ultimate goal is to increase our activities in form of providing scholarships, free school supplies, empowerment for women and children, skill acquisition workshop for youths and donations as well as other facilities like portable water, motorcycles for ease of transportation, micro mobile healthcare equipment to cater for heath needs and other facilities to make life more manageable for the people”.
Mr. Clifford Amede then appealed to other well-meaning Nigerians both home and abroad and international bodies to assist Non-Governmental Organizations like CAG Foundation, who are willing to go back into the various rural communities to look out for people, especially the less privileged and aged to provide them with succour and ensure a better life for the people, in line with achieving the millennium development goals of the United nations.