Sixty-five women at Sawaba in the Asokore Mampong Municipal Assembly in the Ashanti Region have benefited from a four-month Financial Empowerment and Adult Literacy Programme.
The objective of the programme initiated by the United Way Ghana and implemented by Engage Now Africa, both non-governmental organisations, and funded by a philanthropist, Larry McDonald, is to build the financial capacity and economically empower women to lead independent lives.
As part of the programme, the beneficiaries went through four-month skills training such as baking, ice cream making and batik tie and dye making.
Also, the beneficiaries were given starter-packs including baking ovens, flour to start their own businesses.
The Executive Director of United Way Ghana, Mr Felix Kissiedu, in an interview about the programme, said the Financial Empowerment and Adult Literacy Programme, formed part of the Socio-Economic Development Programme to economically empower women in deprived communities and create an enabling environment to foster job creation and encourage savings among low income populations.
He said the core of the mission of his organisation was to build resilient communities, and under the programme the beneficiaries were taken through skills training to help them create their own business and become economically independent.
Mr Kissiedu said the project was to provide beneficiaries with the opportunity to become financially literate while engaging them in training to acquire vocational skills.
In addition, the Executive Director said the beneficiaries were also taken through finance and business development seminars to imbue them with business skills and literacy to be able to keep proper book of accounts for their businesses.
“The Adult Literacy and Financial Empowerment Programme in Sawaba seeks to eradicate poverty and improve the standard of living among the residents of deprived communities by empowering beneficiaries via lessons on the basic principles of sustainability in education and financial stability,” he said.
In a brief about United Way Ghana, MrKissiedu said it was part of the United Way Worldwide with presence in 40 countries, with the mission to economically empower the vulnerable in society.
The Economic Empowerment Lead of United Way Ghana, Robert Mills, said the provision of the start-up packages would help the women to establish their own businesses and “live a life of financial freedom.”
Some of the women in an interview with the Ghanaian Times expressed gratitude to the partners for initiating the programme, saying it has come as a great relief to them.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE