Cape Coast, Nov. 8, GNA - Ten disabled persons who needed assistance to set up their own businesses after learning various trades including dressmaking and carpentry were on Tuesday, presented with tools worth 30 million cedis by the Ghana National Trust Fund (GNTF) under its Equipment Scheme for the Disabled. The beneficiaries who were selected by the Central Regional office of the Department of Social Welfare received tools ranging from hand and electric sewing machines, hair dryers, shoe making machines plus cash donation of 250 and 500,000 cedis for them to set up their own businesses.
They were Ishmael Ebo Mensah and Mercy Essah from the Assin District, Musah Haruna and Kwesi Osiw, Cape Coast municipality, Yaw Gyepi Emmanuel Oteng and Alex Baidoo from Agona and Adjoa Awotwe, Michael Tetteh and Charles Ebo Wilson from Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abrem (KEEA), Ajumako-Enyan-Essiam and Abura-Asebu-Kwamankese districts respectively.
Mr Wilson Gyepi and Mr Oteng, who are into rural craft like basket and kente weaving, were given 500,000 cedis each to assist them in acquiring materials.
Mr Tetteh, Haruna, Mr Osiw and Mr Baidoo who are shoemakers were given 250,000 cedis each.
Addressing the beneficiaries Ms Joyce Frimpong, Executive Director of the GNTF appealed to the Department of Social Welfare to monitor the activities of the beneficiaries to ensure that they put the equipment and monies to good use.
She said the equipment scheme was instituted in 1993 to support selected disabled persons who after completion of their technical training required assistance to purchase equipment for them to be self-employed and economically independent.
Ms Frimpong said so far 300 people had befitted and that this year alone, 30 of such people had received various equipment and stressed that sometimes the Trust donated kiosk or look for venues for them. She advised the beneficiaries to ensure that they used the equipment and the monies for the purpose they were given. Nana Ato Arthur, Deputy Central Regional Minister, who presented the equipment to the beneficiaries said the government in its efforts to mobilize human resource for national development, had not left the disabled out and was making frantic efforts to further pursue the community based rehabilitation programme to train more disabled persons. Mr Paul Djan, Regional Population Officer was unhappy that the Social Welfare Department lacked the requisite resources to enable them to carry out their mandated duties and appealed to the government for support for the Department.
The Deputy Social Welfare Officer, Mr John Ankrah said there were more disabled persons who needed assistance and appealed to all well meaning Ghanaians to support the Fund.