Speaking on the foundation's poverty reduction strategy, PIND's Market Development Programme Manager, Precious Chidi Agbunno, said the strategy was to grow business innovations, increase the income of small businesses and farmers with a view to reducing poverty.
Agbunno maintained that PIND, in line with its mandate, is focused on sustainability, training and supporting the participants in a way that they can function in the absence of the foundation, adding that 'We don't really fund them, but give them little grants to enable them expand what they are doing, but they have to do it commercially and get their targets to pay for their services and this way, poverty will be reduced.
PIND's service provider and active participant at the workshop, Mr Bamidele Ayodele, while speaking on the challenges, listed wrong mindset in the area of sourcing funds and record keeping.
PIND's Organizer and Market Development Manager, Mr Precious Chidi, underscored the essence of the workshop, saying 'we brought them together to have a good understanding of what they are doing, and how we can work together to achieve PIND's objectives of reducing poverty in the Niger Delta.'
He described the 40 service providers drawn from states in the Niger Delta as PIND's key partners, agro dealers and input companies whom 'We are training their capacity and working through them to reach the farmers and small enterprises.'
He urged journalists to assist in not only showcasing the activities and successes of PIND but should also sensitize various levels of government to build more infrastructures such as roads in the region.
A number of seasoned journalists including Prof Ibanga Isine, Rafat Salami and Adeshola Komolafe of Oak Centre for Journalism Development and facilitators from PIND trained participants on new trends on Investigative Journalism, Solutions Journalism and Data Journalism respectively.
Facilitators from PIND took the journalists through the labyrinths of the foundation such as using market systems development to increase income and employment in the Niger Delta, building capacity to attract resources for development activities and network development approach to peace-building, among others.
Journalists were led to facility tour of Appropriate Technology Demonstration (ATED) Centre at the premises of PIND where the working of a bio-digester used to produce pure methane gas from human wastes for cooking was showcased and the aquaculture intervention site harbouring hundreds of fish ponds at Egbokodo.
The ventures, according to the manager, Mr Sylvanus Ozor, has benefitted from PIND immensely such that there's a marginal increase in the production quantum of about 40 per cent through funds accessed and expended equipment upgrade.