Jul 21, 2020

4 weeks of training before COVID-19 Shutdowns

The vocational skills empowerment program, aimed at providing young men and women with the necessary skills to lift them and their dependants out of poverty, has held four weeks of training so far.

First week - general orientation of the participants, in the second week, participants were divided into various groups based on their areas of interest. This saw the division of the participants into leather work group, Cosmetology, computer literacy group, Catering and beads making class.
Second week - each group made a formal introduction of the rules guiding each group and the identification of the various tools and instruments to be used.
Third week - intensification of the practical sessions in all the groups. The method employed is interactive and practically based. Participants were given opportunity to ask questions where they need more clarification and also involve in practical training.
Fourth week - special treat by the catering group. The entire participants, facilitators and supervisors enjoyed the potatoes delicacy.

After that, and due to the growing cases of COVID19 infection in the country, the empowerment program was put on hold. It's been three months since the lockdowns across the country and we have been given the go-ahead to restart the project if we can meet the following modalities. While doable, meeting these criteria will add some unexpected costs to the project.

MODALITIES FOR RESTART OF THE PROGRAM
With the relaxation of the guidelines aimed at coping the spreading of COVID19 in the country and state of implementation, the following have been identified to help keep every participant safe as the program restarts.

  1. The compulsory wearing of facemask by all participants.
  2. Strict adherence to hand washing and use of hand sanitizer by all participants.
  3. Strict observance of physical distancing.

The proposed date for the restart is 20th July, 2020 and the training will run for additional three weeks with the presentation of certificate to deserving participants in the last week.

ITEMS NEEDED FOR RESTART
ITEMS UNIT PRICE QUANTITY TOTAL
1. Hand Sanitizer 5000 1 5000
2. Hand Wash 2500 1 2500
3. Bucket 3000 1 3000
4. Face Mask 150 70 10500
Grand Total 21000

Jul 21, 2020

Starting Small Amidst covid-19 Pandemic

Status - Project has commenced
Objective - To provide training to women that are engaged in agriculture in Ugwogo Nike community on how to convert poultry waste to biogas for cooking and production of bioslurry as an organic fertilizer for farming for the reduction of greenhouse gases emission and food security
Activity dates - March to June
Progress - The twenty women that will participate in the project have been selected and the five project leads have been trained on their role in the coordination and sustainability of the project. The 5 women have been equipped with adequate knowledge on the importance of biogas, sources of biomass, materials used in the construction of a biogas plant and the role of the project in ensuring improved health for families, reducing deforestation,reducing green house gases emissions and promoting food security in Ugwogo-Nike community. They are prepared to carryout their role of guiding the other women towards the achievement of the project goals.

Success Indicator (What would determine that an activity /activities was/were successful): The trainees acquired the knowledge and the importance of biogas, learned how to convert agricultural waste to wealth 

Baseline (The actual information as at the beginning of project): The women involved in the agric business had no idea of biogas, its usage and the importance of the biomass for generating cooking gas and bioslurry as organic fertilizer for farming. 

Target (What was planned to be achieved): Train the women in biogas, its usefulness and ways to utilize biomass generated as a result if agricultural activities.

Result as of Date (What was achieved): The women are excited to be part of the biogas innovative project. They have been equipped with the relevant knowledge and they are eager to serve as project lead.

Challenge Lessons learned / Solutions
The global pandemic (Covid-19) which has led to a new nornal has caused a lot of changes in the project. The state was on total lockdown from March 31st to June 2020. Presetly, there is an ease on the lockdown and activities have partially commenced in the state. This situation has caused a lot of delay in the project timeline. The women in Ugwogo-Nike have been at home all along,unable to plant in their farms as a result of the lockdown.Most women are involved in farm work so scheduling a time for the practical session with the women is taking a little time.
I had to meet the 5 women that will serve as project lead in their farm for the training. I am working with the trained women and the town union president to fix a date for the practical training.

Next Steps 
To carry out the practical session of the training which involves the construction of the biogas plant.

Partner Relationship update
We are working with the town union president and the project leaders to fix a date for the practical construction of the biogas plant.

ADDITIONAL REQUEST/COMMENTS

Purchase of hand sanitizers, nose masks,buckets and soaps for hand washing during the training sessions as the recent outbreak of corona virus in the state has caused a lot of panic amongst people as regards gatherings.

Jul 6, 2020

SBS Changed my Status - Assistant Coach Henry

Hello Donors,

Hope this email meets you well and in good health.

For over two years, SI4DEV has been committed to our goals to provide leadership training to our volunteers and in the process teaching work ethics and values through role model engagement and mentoring. Under the SBS by SI4DEV project, we provided additional business training to some identified partners for step down coaching to low income women in their communities. One such assistant coach, Henry A, writes from Delta state on his experience being trained and becoming a trainer.

Henry writes:

STREET BUSINESS SCHOOL - MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE

In June/July 2019, SI4DEV advertised a program and although feeling frustrated and fed up of life, I filled the form and I received a positive response as I was named among Assistant Coaches Bayelsa location. And in August Coach Trish who doubles as the SI4DEV Operations Manager Nigeria flew into Yenagoa and conducted and intensive training for three of us - Tonye, myself, and Monisola.

In August, our classes began in earnest. I was encouraged to facilitate the first class, with emphasis on LEAVING YOUR COMFORT ZONE. From teaching others, I started measuring my own advantages, things I could maximize to feed myself in order to be fit to help others. I thought of what I can do which I never acquired from a formal training... And that is it, I can wash, I mean that I really enjoy washing, cleaning.

But how do I put it to work. In Bayelsa, we buy water, and that alone kills me. It was bad that sometimes I couldn't afford a bucket to even bath not to talk of cooking. Hence, I planned and relieved after an intensive survey.

In the month of February 2020, I finally took the giant stride. I decided to move from Bayelsa State to a neighboring State, Delta. Where God blessed me with the presence of well-water, and there I launched an SME. I started Smiles Laundry and Cleaning Services. I started with #500 hundred naira. And my customer base daily growing. Although I am yet to rent an office because in the present I cannot afford such, I practice happily and successfully from home. I like for this program to continue, it is changing pattern, causing a paradigm shift among unskilled market persons in Nigeria. Thanks to SBS!

I therefore, recommend that any kind heart individual reading me via our website should robustly support SI4DEV to do more. We are here to socially impact our society. Let me say now, SI4DEV through the platform of SBS is giving life and adding meaning to the hopeless and forgotten ones. I am testifying to that.

______________

This story has been one of the highlights of this project even in these challenging times. I hope you are touched as much as I was reading it.

Your donations make it possible for us to keep supporting these participants and scale up to reach even more people. Please check out our website for more news, videos and blogs from the field.

Many thanks once again.

Nkem

 
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