Gov’t invests $9 million to improve food security and resilience in Northern Ghana

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The Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD) on Wednesday, November 30, 2022, launched a project aimed at improving the livelihoods, resilience and nutritional status of vulnerable communities in the northern part of Ghana. The project dubbed Resilience in Northern Ghana II (RING II) is a continuation of the RING project started in 2015 by government with support from the United States Agency for International Development. Its primary objective is to ensure that citizens in the north are able to improve their resilience and ensure food security as well as have access to improved hygiene and sanitation facilities.

Speaking at the project launch in Nadowli, the Deputy Minister for the MLGDRD, Augustine Collins Ntim, said the project is being rolled out over a five-year period with a $9 million grant from the USAID, a major partner in the project design. He disclosed that government has so far received GHC 3,351,820.36 for the implementation of activities for 2022 while GHC 14,905,800.00 is earmarked to be used for the implementation of RING II activities in 2023.

The Deputy Minister on behalf of the Government of Ghana thanked the United States government for the grant and its continuous support, and assured of Ghana government’s commitment to ensuring the success of the project. He urged officials and other stakeholders in the beneficiary districts to own the project and place utmost importance to it in order to ensure effective implementation. Hon Ntim indicated that, the success of the project will help communities in northern Ghana to mitigate climate challenges, improve nutrition and food security, enhance resilient livelihoods, improve sanitation and hygiene and improve service delivery and inclusive governance. It will also aid government in its design of future programmes to sustain the gains made from the project, he added.

On his part, the Acting Mission Director of USAID Ghana, Paul Pleva, expressed satisfaction to witness the launch of the project. He noted that while it is important to execute the RING II activities, strengthening the governance systems is a special mandate of the project. He charged the beneficiary districts to be transparent and accountable in the delivery of services to the people, indicating that it is the only way the objectives of the project can be realized. Mr. Pleva said the commitment of all stakeholders in the process is necessary to improving the lives of the vulnerable in the society. He added that incorporating gender equity and youth issues in the implementation of the activities is also critical to the RING II project.

The RING II project is being implemented in 17 district assemblies in Northern, North East, Upper East and Upper West regions. These include the Daffiama-Bussie-Issa, Nadowli/Kaleo, Sissala East, Sissala West, and the Wa East districts in the Upper West; the Bawku Municipal, Bawku West, Garu and Tepane districts in the Upper East. The rest are the East Mampurisi and Mampurugu-Mogduri districts in the North East; and the Yendi Municipal, Gushegu, Mion, Nantong, Karaga and Sanarigu districts in the Northern Region. The project is expected to among other things, inculcate the habit of saving amongst smallholder farmers, diversify livelihood activities of the people, enhance government service delivery by the local assemblies and improve the consumption of balanced diet among the people.

The project was designed by the USAID together with various entities of the Government of Ghana including the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development, Ministry of Finance, the National Development Planning Commission, the Coordinating Councils of the beneficiary regions and the beneficiary district assemblies.

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