The threshold of Hope Foundation, an NGO, on Saturday in Ilorin, distributed working tools to over 70 widows and other less privileged to support their means of livelihood.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that items distributed included sewing machines, grinding machines and cash donations, among others.
Ms Damilola Yusuf, Director of Operations of the Foundation, told newsmen that the event was aimed at supporting the means of livelihoods of the beneficiaries.
“For today, we have empowered more than 70 people. We have given more than 15 sewing machines and more than 50 grinding machines.
“Our aim as a Foundation is not just to help people and give them money; we want to empower them with certain skills and programme so that they can feed themselves; we want them to be independent of us.
“We have donors all over to help the hopeless and the less privileged. Our main aim is health care, education as well as to give empowerment to the needy like the widow, aged and the poor,” she said.
Yusuf, who noted that the Foundation’s operation was limited to Ilorin for now, but the future projection was to draw beneficiaries from across the country.
“We are limited to Kwara for now but the projection is that we want to expand from Kwara to all over Nigeria.
”We actually have a different calendar system for our empowerment programme; January 2020, will be for basic health care. We will tour different public hospitals and pay for medical care of different people that are actually in need.
“For September, when students are resuming, we really want to focus on students proceeding from JSS3 to SS1 and give out various essentials such as textbooks and other school materials to primary school pupils,” he said.
She added that the foundation had embarked on such empowerment for the past four years, adding that some widows recently received N250,000 each to support their businesses.
On the criteria for selecting the beneficiaries, she said that the Foundation sent out messages seeking applications for working tools in their areas of need.
“We sent out messages and a lot of people sent an application to us. When they came, we told them to bring their passport photos and their certificate because we don’t want a situation where you give out something to people and they sell it.
“We work on the key people that actually need it for their business. We have our own criteria to follow before we give it to them,” she said.
Ms Rachael Daniel, a beneficiary from Irepodun Local Government Area of the state, who received a sewing machine, commended the foundation for its gesture.
Daniel, a student of the Kwara College of Education, Oro, said that the tools would assist her as a means of paying for her school fees.