A science, technology and innovation park funded by United States’ National Institute of Health (NIH) has been launched in Gambia, to serve as a hub for occupational and environmental health research in West Africa.
The park, Farababantang, is a collaborative project involving the Centre for International Rural and Environmental Health (CIREH) College of Public Health, the University of Iowa, USA, and University of The Gambia’s Department of Public and Environmental Health.
Speaking at the launching ceremony, University of The Gambia’s head of Public and Environmental Health department Dr Rex Kuyt said a sum of US$2.2 million was released by NIH to fund the project, which will be used in tackling local and global public health issues.
According to him, the rationale behind setting up the park is the need to create a centre that will facilitate collaborative researches, data management, policy support and training on environmental vocational health in low and middle income countries.
In his own remarks, the Vice Chancellor of University of The Gambia Prof Mohammadou Kah described the launch as historic. He asked the nation’s youth to become inspired and motivated and work tirelessly in order for the park to fulfil its objectives.
He added that the park can serve as the launching pad for Gambian youth to maximise its potential and take their rightful positions in the global stratosphere of science and technology.