THE Independence Fellowship Scheme (IFS), provided under the Department of Labour and Industrial Relations, will now been given a boost by the Government to ensure more people living in the rural areas actively participate to the economy.
The IFS is a development assistance programme which was established in 1978 to provide technical, skills-based and project management training to rural-based Papua New Guineans.
Since its inception, the IFS has given over 2,100 Papua New Guineans the opportunity to receive skills training and structural and technical support to start and improve their rural projects.
However, it was only until now that the scheme is increasing its structure to offer more scholarships for next year.
The IFS has been issuing about 10 scholarships annually, however, a formal announcement of 500 scholarship winners for 2010 will be made today along
with the launching of funding for approved rural-based projects under the assistance scheme.
Formerly known as the Somare Scholarship, the IFS will now look towards increasing participation in the economy by promoting entrepreneurship at the rural level.