Herbal Practitioners Association secures US$30k grant to drive the herbal industry

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healing herbs on wooden table, herbal medicine
healing herbs on wooden table, herbal medicine

The Banda Traditional Herbal Practitioners Association has received US$30,000 from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to implement climate resilience project to promote and sustain the herbal industry in the Banda District of the Bono Region.

Hope Alive 360 Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation is facilitating the 18-month project, titled “building capacities of traditional health practitioners for conservation and sustainable utilization of biodiversity”, and being funded by the UN Agency’s Global Environment Facility’s (GEF) Small Grant Programme (SGP).

The project, among other objectives, sought to improve biodiversity, food security, and commodity value chain for livelihood enterprise development in the area.

It would further build and sustain the capacities of the traditional health practitioners in quality production and packaging of herbal medicine, as well as sustainable agroforestry practices, alley cropping, and woodlot establishment.

The association would also undertake tree plantation on farms, as well as support sustainable livelihood enterprise development as a means of promoting biodiversity conservation within the landscape, under the project.

Speaking at the launch of the project at Bofie, a farming community, near Banda, Mr Amos Baffour-Mensah, the Executive Director of the Foundation, expressed appreciation to the UNDP for funding the project which would improve on herbal medicine production in the area.

“Herbal medicine practice is an age-old occupation and a source of healthcare provision which must be promoted and sustained”, he said, saying the sustainability of the herbal medicine practice was at risk due to climate change, and unscrupulous human activities leading to the destruction of the vegetative cover.

“So the sustainability of the herbal medicine practice is largely dependent on the availability of medicinal plants”, he said and therefore called on traditional authorities, assembly members and all stakeholders in the Banda District to support implementation of the project to achieve desirable outcomes.

Mr Peter Kwasi Dekobu, the Chairman of the Banda Traditional Herbal Practitioners Association thanked the foundation and the UNDP for the support, saying the project implementation would greatly empower the traditional healers.

He said the herbal medicine industry had huge economic prospects, and therefore called on the government to prioritize, and invest much in the sector saying huge investment in the herbal industry would not only widen the nation’s foreign exchange earnings, but also enhance job creation and poverty reduction.

Nana Yaw Mensah II, the Chief of Bofie, a predominantly farming community, lauded the project, and assured the community’s support to make the implementation successful.

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