IFAD to support porverty reduction programme in Republic of Ghana

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IFAD to support porverty reduction programme in Republic of Ghana

Press release number: IFAD 03/02

Rome, 7 February 2003 - A loan agreement was signed today at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) headquarters by H.E. Dr. Koffi Dsane-Selby, and by Mr. Lennart Båge, President of IFAD. The loan, in an amount of USD 12.3 million, will help fund the ‘Northern Region Poverty Reduction Programme’, with a total cost of USD 59.6 million.

The beneficiaries of the Programme are the poor and vulnerable rural communities of the Northern Region of Ghana, who constitute 70% of the rural population. The target group mainly includes subsistence-farming households, as well as women headed families, the elderly and disabled. Poverty is associated with a high dependence on agriculture, an erratic climate and low productivity of the resource base. The constraints they have are due to limited availability of labour rather than land. High levels of malnutrition, disease, disability, early mortality and illiteracy are the outcomes of these limitations.

The Northern Region Poverty Reduction Programme is a partnership between the Government of Ghana and its development partners to address rural poverty by targeting the poorer communities and most vulnerable groups and empowering them to participate in development activities; these interventions will be supported through a flexible community development fund.

Beneficiaries will be encouraged to analyse the constraints they face, identify possible opportunities and needs and demand and receive support for self-management. To that end, they will participate through five main activities: community awareness; empowerment and capacity building; sustainable agricultural development; rural microenterprise and financial support services and village-level community infrastructure.

With this project, IFAD will have financed 11 projects in the Republic of Ghana, for a total loan amount of USD 124.5 million.

IFAD is a specialized agency of the United Nations with the specific mandate of combating hunger and poverty in the most disadvantaged regions of the world. IFAD makes the greater part of its resources available to low-income countries on very favorable terms, with up to 40 years for repayment and including a grace period of up to ten years and a service charge of 0.75% per year.