The World Youth Skills Day was observed in Accra on Friday with a call on Ghanaians and various stakeholders to collaborate in harnessing individual skills of the youth to contribute to the reduction of high unemployment rate in the country.
Initiated by the United Nations (UN), the day also sought to highlight the importance of supporting and promoting technical and vocational education to harness talents of the youth.
Speaking on the theme “Skills development to improve youth employment” at an “Open skills competition” for pupils of Circuit 32 Adabraka Cluster of Schools in the Accra Metropolis, Cynthia Prah, National Information officer, UNIC, said the issue of unemployment was a major concern for both industrialised and developing countries.
She noted that since it was a setback to the process of development, there was the need to foster the youth’s acquisition of skills and enhance their ability to make informed choices, empowering them to gain access to the changing labour markets.
“Our intention is to create more awareness and conscientise students on the need to harness and appreciate their various skills”, she said.
According to her, the partnership by UNIC and Promasidor Ghana Limited to engage students in painting, crocheting, card board building among others on the day was to increase students’ interests in technical and vocational education and to dispel the erroneous perception held about technical and vocational education.
In his message on the occasion of the celebration, the Secretary- General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon said the youth hold the key to society’s development and bemoaned the many barriers that trap their personal progress.
“Empowering young people through skills development strengthens their capacity to help address the many challenges confronting society”, he said.
According to him, to achieve the visionary 2030 agenda of increasing the number of youth with the skills needed for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship. There was the need for a collaborative effort from governments, businesses, academic institutions, youth organisations to scale up action, impact and resolve to invest more in empowering young people.
BY Claude Nyarko Adams and Antoinette Deku