FAO begins aquaculture support project to restore livelihoods
The Food and Agriculture Organisation of United Nations (FAO) has launched aquaculture support project to restore livelihoods of households in Borno State.The four-year project funded by EU Trust Fund will engage 100,000 households in farming, livestock and fish production.
While flagging-off the project in Gongulong community of Maiduguri, FAO representative in Nigeria, Suffyan Koroma said Boko Haram insurgency in the Northeast has disrupted fishing livelihoods of households.He said fish production and other agricultural activities are important sources of income to households in the Lake Chad region.
According to him, aquaculture-based activities will also provide a meaningful way out of poverty. “This support project could help insurgency-affected families become independent of humanitarian aid for self-reliance.
“Today’s initiative will support 30 households across Jere Local Government Area, of which 10 households in Gongulong are represented. Additional 20 households in Monguno council have also received fish farming kits to commence new livelihoods.”He said the aquaculture project would have a multiplier effect in Gongulong and other communities by employing and empowering more members of the communities.
Fish production, according to him, is an important source of economic diversification and nutrition. “The aquaculture support project will provide profitable income streams for the individuals being engaged in four-year fish production and agribusiness.On how to sustain the programme, he said: “We planned to engage 200 male headed households in fish farming in 2019 and train and equip an additional 100 female headed households in fish processing and marketing in the state.
“Today’s group has been equipped with fish farming starter kits, including 12 fish rearing tanks, fish feeds, fish juveniles, water pumps and other accessories for immediate production.”He said each of the groups was trained on fish farming best practices to boost and sustain fish production, adding that last year, FAO was able to reach over a million people with livelihood support, including seeds distribution, livestock restocking and capacity development.
According to him, the success of livelihoods-based initiatives in Northeast states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, have reduced number of people in need of food assistance from 2.6 million to 1.7 million. “This reflects the substantial impact of our joint efforts in the region.”
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