About 654 girls have successfully completed a one-year vocational training in various disciplines under the Network for Enterprise Development Learning through Sewing (NEEDLES) for Girls – (N4G) project.
The training was mainly in dressmaking, beauty therapy which includes make-up, hairdressing and braiding, and, accessory making comprising beading and millinery
An initiative of the Samira Empowerment and Humanitarian Project (SEHP) and the Ghana Export and Import Bank (EXIMBANK), the project was to help address high unemployment rate in deprived communities in parts of the country targeting young, vulnerable girls and empowering them with employable and entrepreneurial skills.
It was implemented with support from Invest for Jobs, an initiative of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the N4G project.
The girls were drawn from communities in Accra, Kumasi and Tamale in the Greater Accra, Ashanti and Northern Regions respectively.
Mrs Samira Bawumia, wife of the Vice President, speaking at the graduation for 350 girls in Accra yesterday said the importance of women’s economic empowerment specifically through skills training and capacity building, to the progress society could not be over-emphasised.
She said the fashion, beauty and creative arts industry had huge potential globally to improve job creation and create decent incomes for many, especially women, hence the need to pay much attention those sectors.
“Empowering young women to become not only wage-earners but also job-creators is imperative for achieving the 2030 Agenda and for eradicating poverty. When women exercise greater control over economic resources, more women will be able to work and earn income and, in the process, empower those in the informal sectors to expand their financial decision-making power,” she noted.
The Team Leader of the Invest for Jobs, Mr John Duti, indicated that about 80 percent of the graduates across the three locations had been employed by facilitating training agencies under the project.
He said others had been linked to other agencies for internships and possible employment “through the wider networks of these organisations” while the rest were self-employed.
The Team Leader observed that the high unemployment among the youth could partly be blamed for the level of moral decadence across the country and “this must compel us to think and adopt pragmatic measures to ensure that our youth, particularly girls and women find decent jobs.”
Mr Duti said it was in view of this, that the BMZ was committed to partnering the SEHP to reach out to many more young women and equip them with employable skills.
“The N4G project is currently moving to Takoradi and Bolgatanga and will be upscaled to all the 16 regions of Ghana to ensure we have qualified, well-trained workers in Ghana’s fashion, textile, and beauty industries as we create more jobs for our young women.”
The graduation ceremony was crowned with a fashion show and exhibition of products made by some graduates.
BY ABIGAIL ANNOH