Home » To Promote Economic Sustainability: Ecological Balance Trains Youths, Women On How To Make Detergents

To Promote Economic Sustainability: Ecological Balance Trains Youths, Women On How To Make Detergents

by Atlantic Chronicles

Some youths and women in Buea, the Southwest regional capital of Cameroon, have been trained on how to produce powdered detergent, liquid soap, and medicated bathing soap, among others. They were trained on April 8, and 9, 2024, by Ecological Balance, a nongovernmental organisation with head office in Buea.

The two-day training was the result of a project to equip the women youths with skills so that in the long run, they can be able to produce, sell and fend for themselves.

The Lead Trainer at the workshop, Hendreta Konjieh, explained that the project is aimed at empowering the beneficiaries so that they can be able to do something to support themselves and their families. The project is sponsored by Irvingia, an arm of Ecological Balance, and it is out to enhance the lives of youths, with a special focus on girls and women.

Hendreta explains that with society fast changing and women who have in the past been considered a liability, now wanting to change their story, they have decided to enhance themselves and their kids. “Our certificates and degrees now no longer help us to the extent which we had first presumed. We want to be able to do one or two things with our hands, to have a good source of living and a decent one at that.”

On the first day, Hendreta says she trained the women, as well as young girls and boys, on how to make powdered soup as well as medicated soup meant for the treatment of body rashes, eczema and other related skin conditions.

On Ecological Balance’s expectations at the end of the training, Hendreta said, “Our aim is for the trainees to better their lives, and increase their living standards. With this training, they should be able to produce, and not just take the skills and sit back. They should be able to make an income from what they produce using the knowledge gained here.”

She furthered that they intend to follow up with the trainees and encourage them to pick up and grow businesses using the skills. She added that a WhatsApp forum will be created to ease follow-up and communication between the organisation and the trainees.

Among the beneficiaries of the project was Greenlis Mbako Eko, a youth leader of the Apostolic Church in Buea Town. He helped mobilise youths in the community and church to enlist and benefit from the training. To him, the training will help tremendously.

“Last month, we were teaching them responsibility and we said every youth has to work. Now they have a skill and they can use it during the third term holidays. They can produce medicated soup and powdered soup as well and move around and sell. Through that they can now fend for themselves, or at least buy a few things for themselves and reduce the burden on their parents,” Mbako said.

To Mami Christina Mbeng, a woman who participated after learning about the training from a women’s group, the knowledge gained will be transferred to other women within her circles and group, so that they too can benefit. Her priority, she says, is first to produce for her family and then later, raise some capital to produce in large quality for commercial purposes.

The two-day training falls in line with Ecological Balance’s Irvingia programme, aimed at investing in communities, especially in women and girls. The main goal is to empower women and girls by giving them economic independence through sustainable practices. The programme was funded by the New England Biolabs Foundation.

By Andrew Nsoseka

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