Gates Foundation Awards $1 Million for Food, Farming Aid to Nigeria

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has awarded $1 million to the government of Borno State in Nigeria in support of its efforts to help victims of the Boko Haram insurgency who are returning to their communities, AllAfrica reports.

The funds will support a variety of post-conflict interventions, including the distribution of food items to forty thousand victims and farm outreach activities targeting two hundred families who are returning to recently liberated villages. Each farming family will receive a half hectare of tilled and fertile land along with improved seeds, fertilizer, insecticide, and technical assistance aimed at helping them plant new crops.

"These leading lights of philanthropy across the world have shown love to the good people of Borno at a time we are on the ground and looking for any hand to hold in trying to lift ourselves up," said Borno State governor Kashim Shettima. "Now, with the emerging peace in Borno, it is only necessary that, as post-insurgency response, we focus on supporting all categories of victims — from those in internally displaced persons camps, those in communities within Maiduguri, those in our satellite camps outside Maiduguri, to those in communities across different local government areas."