The Chief Executive Officer of Butterfly Your World (BYW), a non-profit organisation, Mr. Biggodwin Martey has appealed to the government to roll out a special training programme to empower street dwellers to be self-reliant.
He proposed that the training programme must focus on technical and vocational training to offer beneficiaries the needed employable skills to make a decent living and contribute to national development.
He said the invasion of street dwellers in the capital was a serious national security issue and cautioned that failure on the part of the country to engage them into something productive could yield unpleasant consequences in future.
Mr. Martey said this when the organisation embarked on a project to provide free meals for hundreds of sweet dwellers in Accra.
Mr. Martey said his interaction with a number of street dwellers over the period has shown that many of them had brilliant ideas, which if offered the right support, could engage in useful ventures and create employment for themselves and others.
“When you speak with these people, you will find out that a lot of them are here by circumstance and are not happy living on the streets. A lot of them have fantastic ideas and if we give them the needed support they would be able to start a business, make a decent income and leave the street.”
“Just as we have Free SHS, we can have a special training programme that will specifically target those on the streets. This is the surest way we can empower them to become self-reliant and contribute to national development,” he said.
Mr. Biggodwin Martey, CEO, Butterfly Your World posing with some of the beneficiaries
The BYW, as part of its broad project to extend support and build the capacities of the less privileged, provided free meals to over 500 street dwellers, comprising children, women, and persons with disabilities.
The beneficiaries were in selected areas including Shiashie, Kwame Nkrumah Circle, Airport, Kaneshie.
It was a moment of joy and excitement as many street dwellers flocked the spots where the items were distributed, jostling one another to catch a meal.
In areas where the target beneficiaries outnumbered the items available, the team procured additional food and water to satisfy the multitudes, many of whom claimed they had not eaten the whole day.
Mr. Martey explained that the decision to extend support to street dwellers was in line with his personal commitment to provide assistance to the destitute and contribute to the provision of sustainable means of livelihood for persons living on the street.
“This is one of the three projects we are perusing as an organisation, all of which aims at providing sustainable support to the needy.
Beyond the items we are giving them, we are also seeking to roll out a comprehensive plan that would support many of them to either go to school or receive some form of training,” he said.