Australia’s Assistant Foreign Affairs Minister visits Hunger Project site in Ghana

The Hon Tim Watts MP, Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs for Australia is in Ghana as part of a move to deepen Ghana-Australia relations.

His December 7 to 8 visit is focusing on Australia-Ghana relations including meetings with a range of Ghanaian government ministers and engagements with Australian companies.

Minister Watts on December 7 saw first-hand the work of The Hunger Project, Australia which is funding the Akode Epicentre focussed on improving livelihoods and will visit Australian Ghanaian clothing company, YEVU Clothing, which is empowering Ghanaian women to bring Ghana’s dynamic textile designs to Australian consumers.

Speaking to journalists at a ceremony at the Akode Epicenter in the Eastern Region, Minister Watt said Ghana and Australia share a common sense of mission to ensure lives are better for their citizens.

“Australia and Ghana are separated many miles by geographic distance but we are connected by a shared sense of mission. I have been really moved by the mission the Hunger Project has been pursuing at the Epi Center in particular the commitment to the empowerment of women and girls in this community,” Minister Watts said.

He added that “The Australian government knows that when it empowers women and girls, we make local communities more resilient. We make communities more prosperous. Everyone wins.”

Ghana’s Eastern Regional Minister, Seth Kwame Acheampong, speaking at a ceremony said the Nana Akufo-Addo-led government will continue to facilitate projects such as the Hunger Project to augment development in the country.

“On behalf of the government, we say we are always available to facilitate what you want to do for our people as partners. Because this is the only way we can ensure the public-private partnership and ensure our people get good results,” the Eastern Regional Minister said.

Also present at the function was the Australian High Commissioner to Ghana, HE Berenice Owen-Jones, Chief Executive Officer for the hunger project Australia, Philippe Magid, and a host of other dignitaries.

The Akode epicenter was mobilized in 2010 and the building was constructed in 2011 on a 5-acre land donated by the community on their demarcated community development
land.

The epicenter is constituted by 5 partner communities which include Akode 1 and 2, Holokpui, Togorme, and Apetorkope.

The Epicenter Leaders are considering admitting another community (Komatsi) into their fold since it is already benefiting from many activities at the epicenter.

The inhabitants of the Epicenter are predominantly farmers who are committed to working hard to eradicate poverty among them through programs being implemented by THP-Ghana in these
communities.

The Akode epicenter has conducted training programs for 43 Epicenter Leaders. The leadership training workshops covered epicenter leaders, chiefs, queen mothers, and opinion leaders.

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