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ROSF offers enterprise skills training, empowers widows, orphans


The Rose of Sharon Foundation (ROSF) recently collaborated with the Yaba College of Technology, Enal Marine And Environmental Services Limited, Relate Africa, and Women Technical Education, Yabatech Chapter to empower over 1000 widows and orphans with free enterprise development training and skills acquisitions.

Wife of the Governor of Lagos State, Mrs Bolanle Ambode, who was the guest speaker at the event, said for widows to survive, they should have sustainable income.

Ambode represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development, Aderemi Thomas Dapo, revealed that, “One of the worst things that can happen to a widow is to lack a means of income and the best is to have a means of livelihood. This initiative is commendable because it is about the best thing that could happen to a widow for welfare development. It is all about teaching them to fish instead of serving them the cooked fish. I wish to assure you that the state government will continue to pursue welfare improvement for women.’’


She urged the widows and orphans to grab the opportunity and apply the initiative to generate income for their families.

The beneficiaries included orphans and unemployed graduates, who were introduced to export opportunities in livestock and crop farming, while they were trained on different vocational skills such as makeup artistry, event decoration, farming and fishing, leatherworks, confectionary catering, fashion design, textile making, jewellery making, tie and dye making, and millinery.

The Convener of the programme, Mrs Folorunso Alakija, Founder of Rose of Sharon foundation (ROSF), said that the training was structured to provide business and life-support services to widows and orphans who have become the principal providers for their families.

Alakija, who was represented by the foundation’s Public Relations officer, Tope Olushola, noted that, ‘These women like the proverbial bag have been thrown into the hot water of life but we believe that the little support, emotionally, financially and skill-wise will make them thrive and become stronger to achieve their dreams. This is what motivates the foundation. We are living witnesses to the transformation in the lives of over 1000 beneficiaries who have been empowered in earlier editions of the enterprise development and skills acquisition programme. Women who could barely feed themselves have now become employers and can provide for their children.”

She added that agricultural training and customer relation skills was introduced to the training because of the huge economic potentials of agricultural business in Nigeria, and also targeted at expanding their revenue windows and empowering them to become practical employers of labour.
She urged Nigerians to reach out and touch the lives of the widows and orphans in the society.

One of the facilitators, Executive Director of Relate Africa, Mr Joseph Ogundare, who spoke on how to use customer service to improve business and increase sales, said to give real service, you must add integrity and sincerity to achieve a successful business, adding that a satisfied customer is the business strategy for all.

Agricultural expert, Mrs Eno Agada, taught participants how to export some local products that are highly sought in some international markets- products such as cassava flour, sesame seeds, bitter kola, cocoa beans, cocoa butter and shea nuts.

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