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13.12.2007 General News

Twelve communities benefit from $70,000 US support


The US Embassy on Wednesday distributed 70,000 dollars to 12 local communities under its Ambassador's Self-Help programme, which began 16 years ago in the country.

The programme, which provides grants to interested applicants from deprived areas for specific projects, is aimed at empowering individuals and communities through increased access to education, health, vocational training and sanitation.

Interested communities must initiate and plan projects that would be beneficial to their people and also demonstrate the commitment to maintain project on their own after the one time donation of funds.

Handing over the cheques to the 12 beneficiaries out of the about 400 applicants, the US Ambassador, Pamela Bridgewater announced that one other grant under the US President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) would be provided to support the fight against HIV/AIDS.

The 10,000-dollars grant went to the widows and orphans of the Upper East Region for the construction of a shelter and a workshop to train them in employable skills.

The amount for the 12 beneficiary communities ranged from 4,000 to 8,000 dollars depending on the nature of the project. Representatives from the various communities signed for the money.

The funds received would go into projects such as school buildings, water and sanitation facilities, and other social services in communities in the Eastern, Brong Ahafo, Upper East, and Central, Volta, Western and Ashanti Regions.

Ambassador Bridgewater said the programme had provided over one million dollars to fund over 380 projects nationwide since its inception.

She said, "the US and Ghana's other development partners can provide the funds, advice and provide training but only the people of Ghana can provide the most important ingredient, determination, commitment and initiative."