The Roman Catholic Church on Tuesday began a rehabilitation programme that would see over 2,000 women widowed by the Boko Haram insurgency in Borno and Yobe states, as well as part of Adamawa state in the northeastern part of the country.
Speaking with newsmen at a workshop organized for the first batch of beneficiaries, the Bishop of Maiduguri Diocese of the Church, Oliver Dashe Doeme, said the initiative was in keeping with Christ’s teaching that the less advantaged members of the society should be supported by others.
He said the major target is to empower them so that they can take care of their children and that at the end of the workshop, beneficiaries would be given financial assistance to start up a business.
“The widows suffer a lot once the husbands are gone they become neglected, most of the family members do not come close to them, let alone to help them. We have an obligation to take care of the poor and needy. So we call the widows first for the workshop and then to give them a little assistance that we make them to take care of themselves. We want them to be able to go back to establish small businesses,” he explained.
The first batch of training is for widows within the Borno and Yobe axis while their counterparts in Adamawa State would receive theirs by weekend.
The three emergency states have come under immense attacks since 2009 and over 10,000 persons have been killed in several assaults staged across various towns and villages of these states, with Borno having the greatest number of attacks according to available statistics.