Free Press (Vol.43 No 34; 12 -18 July, 2004; pg 3)


 The Ative/Torkpo Maranatha Women’s Forum of the Outreach For Christ International (OFCI) has been inaugurated at a ceremony at Torkpo in the Volta Region at the weekend.

 In his welcome address the General Secretary of OFCI Elder Michael Adu explained that OFCI is a non-denominational Evangelistic Ministry established by Rev. AmewugaAdzei as non-political and non-profit making organization to provide holistic socioeconomic programmes in the rural areas.

The inauguration of the Forum was a means to lay the foundation of one of the mission activities under OFCI’s strategic community development programme which is capacity building for poverty reduction. Rural School Project; Deprived Children’s Sponsorship Programme and Leadership training for community empowerment according to Elder Adu were other activities under OFCI’s SCDP. He disclosed that under the leadership training package OFCI has been training 20 community leaders annually in participatory planning, problem solving and management of community projects. Elder Adu also revealed that some of the beneficiary communities were KwahuBesease in the Kwahu South District and AshieduKeteke area of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly. The programme, he said, culminated in the construction of the KwawuBesease JSS with the financial support from the District Assembly. OFCI also facilitated and built 30 community and church leaders to undertake agro forestry and woodlot cultivation in Weta and Atiteti in the Ketu District.

The Maranatha Women’s Forum is a Community Based Organization (CBO) formed by OFCI for the liberated Trokosi inmates in the Ative area. It began with a casual visit whilst the chiefs and the people were lamenting over the problems of underdevelopment in the area. Rev. Adzei assured them the OFCI’s SCDP would bring a change to the community and indeed the commencement of the realization of the dream was being witnessed.

In his brief address Rev. Adzei quoted the Biblical admonition that man must not live by bread alone but by the word of God. This according to him was why his ministry endeavour to put bread on the table or every community to promote the Poverty Reduction Programme hence doing same at Ative and Torkpo. He enumerated host of other activities his ministry undertakes to alleviate the people of their poverty and concluded that “OFCI is a very small organization. We are not adequately equipped either. As a result we do not ascribe unattainable responsibilities to our self”.

He lamented that OFCI’s commitment was limited in finding funds for the execution of projects, organizing all necessary training and assist on the marketing of produce from the projects. However, he noted, it was the wish of OFCI to get a honey processing plant built for the Ative –Torkpo community by the end of the project period. He therefore appealed to the Ketu District Assembly, as they all put their hands on the deck, to come to the aid of the project in providing technical, material and financial support through the disbursement of Social Investment Fund (SIF) and the District Assembly Common Fund (DACF) to provide the needed money for the project. He gave the assurance that by the celebration of the first anniversary the snails, grasscutter and honey projects next year these food items would be served at the function.

On his part the District Chief Executive for Ketu asked the people of the community and the Maranatha Women’s Forum to take the project seriously to enable their neighbouring communities learn from them. He cautioned that the success of the project could be marred if peace in the area was sacrificed and appealed to all to keep the peace especially as it is an election year. He expressed his appreciation for OFCI’s effort to assist the ex-Trokosis and the Ative/Torkpo community to reduce poverty through beekeeping, , snail rearing and grasscutter raising and tree planting. He assured the people that his district would provide every form of assistance possible to bring OFCI’s dream for Ative/Torkpo to fruition.

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