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Sierra Leone: Boost for over 8,000 women farmers

05-12-2002 News Release 02/49

Helping women to resettle and rebuild their lives after years of conflict is a priority for the ICRC in Sierra Leone.

In 2002 the organization provided agricultural assistance for 415 women's associations in Kono and Kailahun districts, in the eastern part of the country, in cooperation with the Sierra Leone Red Cross Society and the Ministry of Agriculture. The community-based vegetable-farming project was specifically designed to improve the living standards of women and enhance their ability to generate income.

Prior to the delivery of the assistance, participants were taught how to prepare a nursery and where to locate a garden. They also learned about pest control and soil conservation and received information on marketing and other production issues. The package received by each group consisted of imported and local vegetable seed, hoes, shovels, metal buckets, machetes and wheelbarrows. Over 8,000 women are estimated to have benefited from the project.

In 2000 and 2001, 971 women's associations (71,442 beneficiaries) received similar assistance in the Western Area, Bombali, Tonkolili, Koinadugu, Kambia, Port Loko, Bo, Pujehun and Kenema districts.

 Further information: Abu Bakr Gamanga, ICRC Freetown, tel. ++232 22 230 954