The Executive Director of Lift Above Poverty Organization (LAPO), Sabina Idowu-Osehobo has expressed the organization’s determination to address the problem of food security in Nigeria through rural agricultural financing.
Speaking during a two day training exercise for staff of the LAPO Agricultural and Rural Development Initiative (LARDI), Idowu-Osehobo said the organization supported 92,156 clients engaged in agricultural activities with N2.2 billion between January and May, 2017.
Represented by Tessa Anota-Aizebeokhai, Manager, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Idowu-Osehobo said LAPO has over the years evolved robust and viable institutions well equipped with systems and structures capable of delivering sound economic, social and health services in the fight against poverty.
She noted that LARDI was entrusted with the mandate to improve the quality of life of rural dwellers through committed support for livelihood activities intended to energize and drive the rural economy.
Idowu-Osehobo added that LAPO addresses challenges limiting farmers’ productivity and income such as non-availability of inputs for improved farm yield and limited access to finance, adding that the organization equally builds the capacity of rural farmers through on-farm demonstration and training.
She expressed delight that beneficiaries who were hitherto engaged in subsistence farming have expanded their farm enterprises with improved income for their families and savings for future investment.
Also, LAPO has equipped 5,699 women with social development skills to challenge entrenched socio-cultural and traditional practices inhibiting their progress and enjoyment of good life.
Executive Director, Sabina Idowu-Osehobo has expressed concern over challenges faced by women which includes discrimination, marginalization, and being excluded from life transforming opportunities, stressing that women empowerment have always been an integral part of LAPO’s poverty reduction efforts.
She said the organization was commitment to dismantling structures and processes that encourage discrimination, injustice and violence against women, adding that gender-based discrimination permeates all cultures, and often manifests in laws, policies, and practices of institutions.
Idowu-Osehobo noted that for more than two decades, LAPO has been in the forefront in bringing gender issues to wider attention, promoting legal and policy reforms and supporting projects that empower women economically.