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11.07.2003 General News

Aliu commends Small Village Foundation

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Accra, July 10, GNA- Vice President Aliu Mahama on Tuesday commended the Small Village Foundation (SVF) of the United States for its humanitarian assistance to improve the quality of lives of people of Bamboi, saying the government appreciate such gestures.

The Vice President, said this when a 15-member delegation from the foundation, led by Nana Kwaku Dapaah II, Paramount Chief of the Bamboi Traditional Area in the Northern Region, called on him at the Castle. The Foundation, based in Boise, Idaho State, has since January this year, raised funds to undertake several projects in Agriculture, Education, Health and Housing.

Following a recent two-week trip of some members of the Foundation, desks and chairs have been purchased for some basic schools, 25 more pupils have been sponsored to return to school, increasing the beneficiaries to 75.

The Foundation has also built a Gari Processing Factory, which employs about 100 people, provided a basket ball court with equipment, provided dental health care and completed a sewing and weaving project. Vice President Mahama praised Nana Dapaah for his initiative in attracting the Foundation to his village.

He asked the members of the Foundation, particularly the seven high school graduates, to be advocates of Ghana in the United States since the first hand experiences had enriched their outlook on Ghana. Mr Kwasi Osei Adjei, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, said it was remarkable that the delegates had left their affluent society to make a difference in a less sophisticated one, and tasked them to correct the negative perception of Africans as lazy people. "You should let your friends know that Africans need equal opportunities to rise from their deprivation," he said.

Ms Christine Churcher, Minister of State for Basic Education and Girl Child Education, urged Nana Dapaah to ensure that girls at Bamboi enter school and complete at the highest level.

In response, Nana Dapaah said girls, outnumbered boys as beneficiaries of the scholarship scheme.

He said chiefs had to be more proactive in sourcing funds to develop their areas and should not be totally reliant on the Central Government.

Other members of the delegation who shared their experiences lauded Ghanaians for their hospitality and friendliness.

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