The National Youth Authority (NYA) has empowered 50 vulnerable youth in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region with skills in the make liquid soap, pomade, beads, fabric and leather wear among other products.
The beneficiaries, majority of whom were females and persons with disabilities from deprived communities, were also trained in attractive packaging and marketing skills to enable them to attract customers and take advantage of market demands.
Theprogramme, which was jointly organised by the Upper East Regional Directorate of the NYA in collaboration of Bongo District Directorate of the NYA, was part ofefforts to help reduce poverty and social vices among the youth.
Addressing the stakeholders on Tuesday, the Regional Director of the NYA, Mr Francis Takyi-Koranteng, explained that the training was geared towards empowering the young people with skills for them to venture into economic activities to help them live dignified lives.
Thus, he said, the young persons would generate income to fight poverty and become self-reliant.
“It is believed that the beneficiaries would use the skills learned to make themselves economically independent as well as help reduce the rate of unemployment and its attendant vices such as teenage pregnancy, armed robbery, child marriage and prostitution in the region,” he said.
The Regional Director advised the beneficiaries to endeavour to impart the knowledge and skills acquired to others in their respective communities to make the training have maximum impact and positive results.
MrTakyi-Koranteng expressed the hope thatsince the training involved both young men and women, itwould not only ensure gender parity and empowerment but would also significantly contribute to the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Regional Director indicated that there was demand for all the products the beneficiaries had been trained to make and sowhen the youth put the skills to good use, they would enjoy financial security.
Mr Salam Abdul-Razak, a support staff memberof the Bongo District Directorate of NYA, stated that beneficiaries were selected based on their vulnerabilities and expressed the hope that the training would empower them to be gainfully employed.
The beneficiaries expressed gratitude to the NYA for training them and pledged to pass on the knowledge and skills acquired to their fellow vulnerable youth their various communities.
Mr Abraham Abagna, a beneficiary from the Namoo community, noted that most of the youth in his area were without any meaningful jobs, noting that when he returned home, he would form a group would be formed and impart the skills its members.
MsRashida Abdul-Rafik, another beneficiary from Feo, who promised to share the knowledge with other people in her community, explained that it would empower girls in the area economically and enable them to stand for their rights against men who would want to abuse them.
Ms Mabel Asama, a participant from the Vea, said the training would help her to establish her own business to produce ear rings, soap and sandals, which would fetch her income and help reduce poverty in her family.
FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, BONGO