Climate Change: NABOCADO holds Stakeholder Engagement with District Assemblies on CAAPs

 

The Livelihood and Advocacy Directorate of Navrongo- Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organization on Wednesday, held a stakeholder engagement meeting with Directors of Agric Services and Planning Officers from the various District Assemblies across the Diocese.

The meeting which formed part of activities in the implementation of the Climate Adaptation and Action Plans (CAAPs) project was meant to assess the progress of the implementation of the project, share updates and feedback, including challenges from the Districts assemblies and plan the ways forward in achieving the objectives of the CAAPs.

In his welcome address, Dr. Joseph Ayembilla, Human Development Coordinator, underscored the need for deeper cooperation and coordination among all stakeholders, especially the staff of NABOCADO, Agric officers, and District Planning Officers.

He charged participants to eschew personal differences and organizational decentralization barriers and work towards attaining a sustainable environment for good Agric practices and development for communities, especially under the challenges and risks presented by climate change as set out in the project objectives.

A presentation on the progress of work by Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Michael Ayamga revealed that activities such as sustainable agricultural practices (composting and bonding), Tree growing, Measures against bush burning, Energy saving improved mud-stove ( E-SIMS), Bio-insecticide for pest and disease control using locally innovated methods have all led to significant improvements in the livelihoods of local farmers and the environment in which they live.

He also facilitated the exhibition of hazard maps with expected changes or outcomes after the implementation of CAAPs which were designed by all 26 beneficiary communities, urging Agric and Planning officers of the assemblies to commit to attaining the desires of the people in their districts.

Brief Background of CAAPs

The Climate Adaptation Action Plan is a community-led project aimed at improving Communities’ resilience against the effects of changing climate.

It is been implemented by the livelihood and advocacy directorate of the Navrongo -Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Organization in collaboration with various stakeholders including district Agric departments, forestry departments, Ghana Irrigation Development Authority, Farmers, women cooperative groups as well as traditional authorities with funding from Misereor

So far,26 communities in 6 districts, namely Builsa South, Kassena Nankana East, Bawku West, Talensi, Bongo, and West Mamprusi are implementing climate change adaptation measures to make them resilient to its effects, especially on their livelihoods.

Highlights of Presentations by Agric Directors and Planning Officers.

Meanwhile, the district assemblies expressed concerns over the over-dependence of some local industries ( breweries, bakeries, and commercial food vendors)on fuel wood resulting in the continuous felling of trees for such purposes.

They say the trend could pose negative consequences for the tree growing activities as they called for intensified education and the introduction of the Energy Saving improved mud-stove ( E-SIMS) to such industries.

Some districts were applauded for achieving over 70 percent survival rate for trees planted under the project as they shared knowledge on how other areas could adopt such strategies.

In all, 1,769 farmers ( 567 males and 1,202 females) have planted 8,602 species of tree seedlings including eucalyptus, neem, and Baobab as part of the CAAPs implementation.

Some Agric officers however called for more engagement with the farmers in selecting the tree species for each district. This, they say would enable them take into consideration the farmers’ interests and environmental factors before distributing the seedlings.

 

Below are some photographs of the meeting

Livelihood and Advocacy Directorate Holds Review Meeting for Community Animators

Over 50 community Animators from across the Diocese’s Districts took part in an annual review meeting organized by the Livelihood and Advocacy Directorate of the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organization, NABOCADO. 

This was part of the project dubbed Strengthening of Small Holder Farmers Resilience Towards a Changing Climate and Promotion of Environmentally Friendly Agriculture in the Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, implemented under the Diocesan Livelihood and Advocacy Programme, DiLAP, and funded by Misereor.

Animators are selected community representatives tasked with coordinating activities for effective understanding, participation and implementation of the project.

Participants (both old and New animators) were taken through presentations on

* Understandings Community animation for project sustainability
* Animators role in CAAPs implementation.
* Animators’ role in Gender related projects activities
* Animators Role in local innovations development and
* Data to be collected by Animators/ Reporting.

The meeting was facilitated by Director of the Livelihood and Advocacy Directorate, Mr Dominic Avea Aniah, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Micheal Ayamga and Gender Coordinator Patience Akapaanab.

Below are some pictures from the engagement. 

NABOCADO, CRS Offer Aid to Refugees in Sapeliga

The Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO), with support from the Catholic Relief Service, has gone to the aid of some persons of concern (refugees) at Sapelliga in the Bawku West District in the Upper East Region with assorted food items and toiletries worth GHC 1, 281, 114.63.

It formed part of their Christmas and New Year’s Cooperate Social Responsibility of giving hope to the underprivileged in society.

The persons of concern (refugees) came to Ghana in 2019 due to instability in neighbouring Burkina Faso and others as a result of the activities of jihadists that had displaced many of them. Over one thousand four hundred refugees from three hundred and thirty-eight households are said to be living in Kaare, a suburb of Sapelliga.

At a short ceremony to distribute some relief items, Bishop of the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocese, Most Reverend Alfred Agyenta, said the Catholic Church would continue to keep them in prayer for the protection of God. He expressed gratitude to CRS for the funding.

“Wherever the church works, we do not look at the only the bodily needs of the people. Man does not live on bread alone. Our concern is also to see how we can let you understand that you’re also children of God. We will continue to sustain you by our prayers for your life. We are equally grateful to CRS for the benevolence to these people,” Bishop assured the people.

Country Representative of CRS to Ghana, Mr. Daniel Mumuni, noted that refugee crisis continued to rise, deepening deepen vulnerability of families despite decades of efforts to address the challenge.

“I’m deeply touched by what I’m seeing here today. This is a reminder to all of us about the harmful effect of war and of the security crisis that is pervading and affecting our region seriously today. We are feeling the effect of what has happened elsewhere. So,, I want to encourage all us particularly our country to continue to ward off some of these extremist violent and tendency,” Mr. Mumuni pleaded.

Each household received 50 kilograms bags of rice, maize, some beans, cooking oil, salt, and some non-food items like bathing and laundry soap, blankets, mosquito nets, sanitary pads, and buckets, among others, and GH₵320.00 cash. A beneficiary of the gesture, Madi Bukari from Burkina Faso, thanked CRS and the Catholic Church for the items.

“There is joy in our hearts today as we receive these items. Our tears have been wiped off today. We thought we were animals but we feel human through this kind gesture,” Mr. Madi Bukari said.

District Chief Executive for Bawku West, Mr. Issahaku Tahiru, praised NABOCADO and CRS for the intervention. He appealed to individuals and organizations to support the Assembly in their plans to build a school for the persons of concern.

Source. Ghana Broadcasting Corporation 

Catholic Church launches Sahel Peace Initiative phase II

The Catholic Church in Ghana has launched the Sahel Peace Initiative (SPI) phase II to help promote peace, social cohesion and raise awareness on violent extremism.

The SPI is a peace project being rolled out by the Church with funding from the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) to create awareness on threats of terrorism, promote social cohesion through advocacy and build the resilience of communities affected by conflicts in the Sub-region.

It would also work with relevant stakeholders to find mitigating measures to resolving conflicts through mediation and dialogue and respond to humanitarian needs of people affected by the threats and conflicts.

The project is being coordinated by the National Catholic Secretariat (NCS) and being implemented by the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO), a Faith development organization.

Speaking at the launch of the project in Bolgatanga, the Upper East Regional Capital, Most Reverend Philip Naameh, the President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference, said currently, the Central Sahel region of West Africa was experiencing upsurge in violence due to increased extremism, weak national institutions and diminishing national resources.

He said poverty, high levels of unemployment, corruption and unequal access to capital had fostered a state of hopelessness, which had given rise to the series of conflicts in neighbouring countries and Ghana was no exception.
This, he said, had led to the migration of millions of people in search of security with women and children being the most affected.

The lack of comprehensive enabling environment for the citizens had made the people particularly the youth vulnerable to be recruited into terrorist groups to cause violence and conflicts, he added.

“Once we create this vulnerability for our youth and many of our citizens, then, we invite the conflict even without intending it.

“Evidence of this is the reported incidents of activities of extremists in some neighbouring countries like Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and along some border communities in Northern Ghana, giving widespread perception that governments in the Sahel are failing to provide political, social and economic services,” he said.

Most Reverend Naameh, noted that it was imperative for governments to work with local communities and civil society organisations including religious leaders, to rebuild trust in local and national institutions and rekindle civic participation.

Most Reverend Alfred Agyenta, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, indicated that the project was timely considering the current instability in the Upper East Region, with many lives and properties being lost to ravaging conflicts.

“In her present state of vulnerability, the region is not only severely exposed to external threats of violence and insecurity but it is also the first point of call for the displaced and traumatised people of the neighbouring countries looking for safe haven,” he said.

Mr Daniel Mumuni, the Country Representative, CRS, said violent extremism had increased the number of displaced persons by 40 per cent in the Subregion at the end of 2021 and the persistent communal conflicts in Ghana put the country at risk of being attacked.

He said the project aimed to empower the Catholic Church to take ownership and leadership in promoting peace and building cohesive society to ensure that individuals living in Ghana experienced greater levels of peace, social cohesion and resiliency and provide humanitarian services to people in crisis.

Mr Stephen Yakubu, the Upper East Regional Minister, commended the Catholic Church in Ghana and its partners for their contribution to national development over years and said he was optimistic that the SPI would boost the efforts made so far to restore peace in the region especially in Bawku, Doba and Kandiga.

Government must address poverty, rising inequalities

Most Reverend Philip Naameh, the President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference, has called on the government to address the rising poverty levels and discrimination in the distribution of state resources to avoid insurgency. 

He said: “Poverty and rising inequalities have fostered a culture of hopelessness in our Ghanaian communities, and this has contributed to the recruitment of many of the youth into violent activities, putting the country at risk of external attacks.” 

Most Rev Naameh underscored the urgent need for government to distribute development fairly among all groups to avoid widespread perception of discrimination and exclusion among the citizens, to strengthen the peace and social cohesion. 

Speaking at the launch of the Sahel Peace Initiative (SPI) Phase II at Bolgatanga, in the Upper East Region, Most Reverend Naameh who is also the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tamale Catholic Diocese, noted that the high unemployment, corruption and unequal access to capital leading to unrest in some Sahelian countries also affected Ghana. 

He said there had not been a comprehensive agenda to create enabling environment, particularly for the youth to thrive and that had made them vulnerable to attempts by terrorists’ groups to be recruited to cause instability. 

“Once we create this vulnerability for our youth and many of our citizens, then, we invite the conflict even without intending it. 

“Evidence of this is the reported incidents of activities of extremists in some neighbouring countries like Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and along some border communities in Northern Ghana, giving widespread perception that governments in the Sahel are failing to provide critical social services,” he stressed. 

Most Rev Naameh said it was “a big scandal” for majority of the citizens to be discriminated against when it came to the distribution of development projects, adding that “leaders must be committed to the common good of all Ghanaians.” 

“While the majority are poor and struggling to get one meal a day, others can afford everything from the same Ghana, even primary school, they will send their children to Europe and America and this a big scandal which I call on those who manage our resources to address and do so immediately. 

“If there is hardship, let everybody living in Ghana experience it but if some are excluded from it and take a life which approaches more of a wealthy country, then I will say that it is not right,” he said. 

The archbishop commended government for efforts being made in the security and said it needed to make security presence visible in communities in Northern Ghana, especially those bordered by the countries which had experienced violence, to ensure that the country was protected. 

The SPI is a peace project being rolled out by the Catholic Church with funding from the Catholic Relief Services (CRS), to create awareness on threats of terrorism, promote social cohesion through advocacy and build the resilience of communities affected by conflicts in the Subregion. 

It would also work with relevant stakeholders to find mitigating measures to resolve conflicts through mediation and dialogue and respond to humanitarian needs of people affected by the threats and conflicts. 

The project is being coordinated by the National Catholic Secretariat (NCS) and implemented by the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO), a faith development organization. 

Mr. Thomas Awiapo, the Executive Secretary, NCS, said the project which would involve women in the peacebuilding processes would build the capacity of communities especially the youth to enable them to identify early warning signals of activities of terrorism and help to combat them. 

 

Upper East Region is bleeding, government must step up security efforts – Bishop Agyenta

The government has been urged to step up security efforts to curb the incessant violence and conflicts in some parts of the Upper East Region, to protect lives and properties. 

Most Reverend Alfred Agyenta, the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, said, “the region is currently bleeding profusely” and demanded that the government took urgent steps to stop the destruction in the region.

The bishop was speaking in Bolgatanga at the launching of the Sahel Peace Initiative (SPI) Phase II, being implemented by the Catholic Church, with funding from the Catholic Relief Services (CRS). 

Currently, apart from the renewed protracted Bawku Chieftaincy conflict which had claimed countless lives and destroyed property worth huge sums of Gahan Cedis, the land dispute between the Doba and Kandiga was also contributing to destabilising the region.  

Describing the region as a weak link in the country’s security architecture, Most Reverend Agyenta, noted that the government needed to beef up security in the region taking into consideration the threats of extremists and terrorists in neighbouring countries. 

“The Upper East Region is in turmoil, experiencing violence and armed conflicts centre, left and right.  

“In her present state of vulnerability, the region is not only severely exposed to external threats of violence and insecurity but also the first point of call for the displaced and traumatised people of the neighbouring countries looking for safe haven,” he said. 

The bishop explained that violence had never solved any human problem in history and urged the people of the region, especially those involved in the conflicts to embrace peace to ensure sustainable development.  

“Through the Sahel Peace Initiative, the Church in accordance with her moral duty will continue to advocate peace, to speak to those who have the conscience, but we also expect and indeed we demand that the government live up to her constitutional responsibility to restrain the heartless from destroying innocent lives and property in our region,” Bishop Agyenta added. 

Mr Stephen Yakubu, the Upper East Regional Minister, noted that currently there was relative peace in Bawku, Doba and Kandiga and the government was working hard to ensure lasting peace for accelerated development. 

He regretted that because of the conflict, some institutions and development partners including investors were moving out of the region which was worrying and noted that the Sahel Peace Initiative would complement the government’s efforts to restore sustainable peace and social cohesion. 

The SPI which is being coordinated by the National Catholic Secretariat and implemented by the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Diocesan Catholic Development Organisation (NABOCADO) to create awareness of threats of terrorism, promote social cohesion through advocacy and build the resilience of communities affected by conflicts in the Sub-region. 

It would also work with relevant stakeholders to find mitigating measures to resolve conflicts through mediation and dialogue and respond to the humanitarian needs of people affected by the threats and conflicts. 

Church project strengthening communities’ resilience to fight violent extremism

Bunkpurugu (U/E), Sept 27, GNA – A project to build the resilience of border communities against threats of terrorism and violence extremism in the Bunkpurugu-Nakpanduri District of the North East Region has begun. 

Dubbed, “Strengthening border communities’ resilience for violence prevention”, the 10-month project would empower border community stakeholders to promote social cohesion and help prevent the infiltration of violent extremists and terrorists.  

It is also targeted at using local knowledge and resources to identify and harness shared values and beliefs and to build local and community structures that would promote peaceful coexistence and inclusive development among diverse people and communities threatened by activities of violent extremists.  

It is being implemented by the Good Governance, Justice and Peace Directorate of the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO), a faith-based organization, with funding from the European Union through the support of Coginta Ghana, a Non-Governmental Organisation.  

At a stakeholder capacity-building workshop towards the implementation of the project, Mr Joseph Bangu, the Director, Good Governance, Justice and Peace Directorate, NOBOCADO, noted that the threats of terrorism in Ghana were real, considering happenings in the neighbouring countries.  

He said apart from the political instability in some countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, countries in the Sahel region such as Niger, Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso had experienced terrorist attacks, thereby putting Ghana at risk.  

He said the project which would be implemented in 15 border communities would build and strengthen district and community level structures to create an interface for a proactive response to issues of violent extremism.  

Mr Bangu said the project would also ensure that stakeholders such as the religious and traditional authorities, local authorities and community members worked closely with the security agencies to prevent any spillover from the neighbouring countries.  

“We started capacity building training for community peace agents, which cuts across, including women, natives and non-natives and the youth and we have also formed and trained school peace clubs in nine schools in the border communities to help in the campaign through durbars and drama among others.  

Mr Bangu said Ghana’s borders were porous and there was a need for major stakeholders to work with the security agencies to ensure that suspected characters were reported for investigation and action.  

“We want the chief, religious leaders and assembly members to understand the role of the security services and vice versa for them to work together for there to be social cohesion so that in the event of any reporting, the structures are laid out for the security to act.   

“The essence is to prevent the activities, recruitment, radicalisation of people along these border communities,” he added.  

Mr Joseph Louknaan, the District Chief Executive for the Bunkpurugu-Nakpanduri, noted that the district had 25 border communities and the insecurity in neighbouring countries put residents in those communities in danger.  

He said the district over the years had experienced chieftaincy and land disputes, resulting in the imposition of a curfew for the past six years and noted that terrorists could take advantage of such a situation to recruit people to commit a crime.  

The DCE said it was imperative for members of the communities, especially those living along the border, to be sensitised to resist the temptation to be recruited and report suspiciuos characters to security for investigations.  

 

Conflict prone communities urged to promote peace

Dr Joseph Ayembilla, Human Development Coordinator, Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO) says peace is a panacea to achieving Ghana’s socioeconomic development agenda to improved livelihoods.

He therefore called on all stakeholders, particularly those in conflict prone communities to work towards promoting peace and security to ensure the protection of human lives and dignity.

This, he said, would contribute to achieving food and nutritional security through increased agriculture production among others for the vulnerable.

Dr Ayembilla said this at Pusu-Namongo in the Talensi District, Upper East Region, at an internal reflection on the Integrated Peacebuilding for Food and Nutrition Supply (INPEACE) project, being implemented by the Good Governance, Justice and Peace Directorate of NABOCADO and sponsored by MISEREOR.

 

The three-year project is being implemented in 16 communities in three administrative districts in the diocese, Bawku Municipal in the Upper East Region, and Bunkpurugu-Nakpanduri and Yunyoo-Nasuan Districts in the North East Region.

The goal of the project is to support local structures at the grassroots level to carry out peace building activities through non-violence approach and identify early warning signs as well as support the Assemblies to mainstream peace building activities into their medium-term development plans.

Dr Ayembilla noted that conflicts was a bane to development, bringing all activities to a standstill and exposing people especially the vulnerable to extreme poverty and food and nutritional insecurity.

He called for an end to the conflicts in the regions, particularly Bawku, Doba and Kandiga.

 

Very Reverend Father Lawrence Azure, Vicar General, Catholic Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, said conflicts had the tendency to expose people to extreme hunger as productivity would be reduced.

Citing the Russia-Ukraine conflict as an example, the Vicar General noted that the world was going through tough times in terms of increase in the prices of fuel and food at the international market and the situation was impacting negatively on livelihoods of developing countries like Ghana.

Similarly, he said the protracted Bawku Chieftaincy conflict and the Doba-Kandiga land dispute which had claimed many lives and property was worsening the plight of the people in the region and threatening their livelihoods.

He said since the reemergence of those conflicts, many people had been displaced while others fled their communities in search of non-existing jobs in the cities.

“As we enter into this rainy season, we are wondering how effective agriculture activities can be carried out in these communities which are predominantly farming areas,” he lamented and called for collective efforts to promote peace.

Mr Joseph Bangu, the Director, Good Governance, Justice, and Peace, said the project employed the community peace building approach in which community peace agents, school peace clubs and the traditional authorities were established to play critical roles in identifying early warning signs to collaborate with the Assemblies to prevent conflicts.

He said over the period through the project, several warning signs had been picked up and given to the Assemblies to act on which helped to prevent conflict.

The participants from the beneficiary districts were to reflect on the role of the project in preventing conflict in their areas and strategise to improve upon peace building efforts.

Peace, panacea to Ghana’s socioeconomic development – NABOCADO

Pusu-Namongo (U/E), June 1, GNA – Dr Joseph Ayembilla, Human Development Coordinator, Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO) says peace is a panacea to achieving Ghana’s socioeconomic development agenda to improved livelihoods.

He therefore called on all stakeholders, particularly those in conflict prone communities to work towards promoting peace and security to ensure the protection of human lives and dignity.

This, he said, would contribute to achieving food and nutritional security through increased agriculture production among others for the vulnerable.

Dr Ayembilla said this at Pusu-Namongo in the Talensi District, Upper East Region, at an internal reflection on the Integrated Peacebuilding for Food and Nutrition Supply (INPEACE) project, being implemented by the Good Governance, Justice and Peace Directorate of NABOCADO and sponsored by MISEREOR.

The three-year project is being implemented in 16 communities in three administrative districts in the diocese, Bawku Municipal in the Upper East Region, and Bunkpurugu-Nakpanduri and Yunyoo-Nasuan Districts in the North East Region.

The goal of the project is to support local structures at the grassroots level to carry out peace building activities through non-violence approach and identify early warning signs as well as support the Assemblies to mainstream peace building activities into their medium-term development plans.

Dr Ayembilla noted that conflicts was a bane to development, bringing all activities to a standstill and exposing people especially the vulnerable to extreme poverty and food and nutritional insecurity.

He called for an end to the conflicts in the regions, particularly Bawku, Doba and Kandiga.

Very Reverend Father Lawrence Azure, Vicar General, Catholic Diocese of Navrongo-Bolgatanga, said conflicts had the tendency to expose people to extreme hunger as productivity would be reduced.

Citing the Russia-Ukraine conflict as an example, the Vicar General noted that the world was going through tough times in terms of increase in the prices of fuel and food at the international market and the situation was impacting negatively on livelihoods of developing countries like Ghana.

Similarly, he said the protracted Bawku Chieftaincy conflict and the Doba-Kandiga land dispute which had claimed many lives and property was worsening the plight of the people in the region and threatening their livelihoods.

He said since the reemergence of those conflicts, many people had been displaced while others fled their communities in search of non-existing jobs in the cities.

“As we enter into this rainy season, we are wondering how effective agriculture activities can be carried out in these communities which are predominantly farming areas,” he lamented and called for collective efforts to promote peace.

Mr Joseph Bangu, the Director, Good Governance, Justice, and Peace, said the project employed the community peace building approach in which community peace agents, school peace clubs and the traditional authorities were established to play critical roles in identifying early warning signs to collaborate with the Assemblies to prevent conflicts.

He said over the period through the project, several warning signs had been picked up and given to the Assemblies to act on which helped to prevent conflict.

He said over the period through the project, several warning signs had been picked up and given to the Assemblies to act on which helped to prevent conflict.

The participants from the beneficiary districts were to reflect on the role of the project in preventing conflict in their areas and strategise to improve upon peace building efforts.