The Central and Western Fishmongers Improvement Association (CEWEFIA), with support from STAR-Ghana, is implementing a one-year capacity building programme for women fish processors in the Central Region.
The project, which would be implemented in the Komenda, Elmina, Moree and Ekon communities, is aimed at addressing the economic challenges faced by the women as a result of poor decision making and participation.
Titled: “Women’s Role and Participation in Governance to Alleviate Poverty,” the project would set the appropriate parameters for effective participation in the development process by all actors.
It would engage key stakeholders in the various district assemblies and the fishing industry to build consensus to address the needs of women fish processors.
Launching the project in Cape Coast, the Project Manager, Mr Michael Takyi, explained that due to the inability of women fish processors to participate effectively in the decision-making process of the assemblies, their concerns were often not captured in the assemblies’ Medium Term Development Plan (MTDP).
He said it was against that background that the project was being rolled out to ensure that the women’s groups had strong representation on decision-making platforms at the District, Regional and National levels, especially at the Revenue, Environment and Tourism and Works sub– committees.
“Women fish processors’ need for good, disability-friendly processing sheds, storage and washroom facilities will be captured and budgeted for in the 2018/19 CAP and MTDP,” he said.
As part of the project, he said advocacy, skills and good governance training workshops would be organised for women fish processors to enable them to have the confidence to participate effectively in decision-making and to engage and hold duty-bearers and influencers accountable.
Again, dialogue meetings would be used to influence the MMDAs, Fisheries Commission and the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development to recognise women fish processors needs as priority issues for Ghana’s food security and economic development.
Mr Takyi was optimistic that the women would have strong voting power on the fisherman cooperative council at the end of the project.
Madam Diana Otuteye, a fishmonger at Moree, expressed delight about the initiative and said that would go a long way to boost their confidence to participate in the assembly’s activities.