THE Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) project has been expanded in the Ashanti Region with the inclusion of seven more districts as beneficiaries.
The districts are Ahafo-Ano South, Ahafo-Ano North, Adansi North, Atwima Nwabiagya, Asante-Akyem North, Amansie West and Mampong Municipality.
More than 900 new beneficiaries have thus been brought on board the project as a result of the inclusion of the seven districts.
Previously, only the Kumasi metropolis and the Obuasi Municipality benefited from the project.
The LEAP, which was instituted by the government about two years ago, was in line with the National Social Protection Strategy.
Under the project, cash transfers between GH¢8 and GH¢15 are made to qualified households every month.
The Ashanti Regional Director of the Department of Social Welfare, Mr Paschal S. Osei-Twumasi, told the Daily Graphic that GH¢21,556 was paid to beneficiaries in the region as of April 9, 2009.
He stated that there had been a mad rush for application forms for the LEAP because of the benefits inherent in it.
Mr Osei-Twumasi, however, stated that applicants would have to be screened to ensure that only qualified persons were approved.
He said the ultimate aim of the project was to cover all the 27 administrative areas of the region.
The regional director said community LEAP implementation committees had been constituted in the beneficiary areas to assist in identifying qualified applicants.
Mr Osei-Twumasi said the work of the committees had gone a long way in facilitating the disbursement of funds to beneficiaries.
He described the feedback to the disbursement as encouraging “because the monies continue to address some of the problems the people faced.”