The Executive Director of the National Foundation for Economic Development known as FEEDLib1st says if Liberia must achieve its goal to reducing the high level of poverty in the country, there’s a need to invest in the youthful population, especially entrepreneurship and capacity building for its citizens.
John Tarley lamented that Liberia is one of Africa’s oldest Republics with population less than 5 million people, rich in natural resources but still among nations with the poorest people in the world. Speaking to reporters, May 09, 2019, Tarley disclosed that it is against this backdrop the National Foundation for Economic Development known as FEEDLib1st that grew out of a local Human Rights NGO is been established to serve as Liberia’s leading economic development agency working to alleviate poverty and hunger in the country.
According to him, the organization as the first agency with holistic strategies of alleviating poverty by empowering local communities has designed what it called “2face approach” to accomplish its mission. The FEEDLib1st Executive Director named the “2face approach” as “Grant Making Foundation” and “Implementing NGO”.
According to him, the grant making foundation is engage in awarding grants, contracts and no-interest loans to qualified community-based entities to deliver service in a new way to resolve unmet needs as innovation for poverty/hunger reduction in the country. “If we must be serious about alleviating poverty/hunger, we must directly involve the people affected by it through support to their own local initiatives to lead the campaign. As a local grant maker, we are familiar with the local context and by making grants and providing other supports to community-based groups, organizations, businesses, by allowing funding to get closer to the most needed people to address their own needs. Community philanthropy and grant making is a new concept in Liberia. Moreover, we value grant making as a powerful poverty and hunger alleviation and development tool” he stated.
Tarley named Agriculture Development Fund, No- Interest Loan with services included, Low-Income Family Housing, Business Development Fund, Community Development Fund, Site Clean-up/Sanitation Fund, Public Policy/Democracy Fund, and Career Development Fund among others as focus areas of the grant making component. He also stressed the need for job development and other human resource capacity building programs as key factor that would drive Liberia’s employment rate to an improved level.
The Liberian employer also disclosed the establishment of Liberia Workforce Center in County’s Capitals and Cities to provide development services as phase two of the “2-face approach” that includes: Support to farmers, Nurse-on Wheels, Healthcare Training (CNA), Mental Health Services, Job Training/Career laddering, Job listing www.LiberiaWorks.org, and Alcohol, Tobacco& Other Drugs (ATOD) abuse services among others as focus areas.
He emphasized that philanthropists and the private sector play a vital role of any nation to alleviating poverty/hunger and if Liberia must succeed, it must critically venture into the initiative. Tarley added that with increased private sector activities in the country, growth will increase for opportunities; thereby fostering innovations for more traditional methods to combating poverty/hunger. He intoned that unless the private sector plays a significant role in the country’s economy, the success of government and its partners to end Liberia’s high poverty rate remains elusive.
He meanwhile, pledged his organization’s commitment and unwavering support to work with partners and major stakeholders to empowering less fortunate Liberians, especially the youthful population and those involved into businesses.