The Our Lady of Mercy Community Services, a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), working in the Navrongo Municipality in the Upper East Region has trained young girls in various vocational skills and entrepreneurship development.
The girls were taught dress and beads making, batik, tie and dye and soap making. Mr Emmanuel Atiiga, the Director of the NGO, said this at an exhibition ceremony organized by the NGO in Navrongo to showcase some of the products they had produced during the training.
The ceremony which brought together parents of the beneficiaries, members of the Navrongo Traditional Council and the Navrongo Municipal Assembly, was to support each of the 31 beneficiaries, with a sewing machine each, a certificate as well as a start-up capital.
Out of the 31 beneficiaries, nineteen successfully completed dressmaking, eight in beads making, four batik, tie and dye and soap making. Mr Atiiga said the NGO aimed at providing economic empowerment to underprivileged communities and individuals, particularly women and youth through literacy and non-formal education, ICT and employable skills training, workshops and seminars, entrepreneurship development as well as Human Rights Campaigns and Advocacy.
He explained that the initiative had helped to reduce the rural urban migration in the area especially among the youth and said those who had received training over the years had established their own businesses and even employed other young people in the area.
“Our Lady of Community Services was established in 2005, and since then it has been proving skills training with start-up capitals to support the youth and about 370 youth have acquired employable skills and 300 youth in ICT,” he said.
Mr Atiiga noted that activities of the NGO had been expanded to include radio programmes and adolescent reproductive health education and advocacy in the area. “We have now expanded our activities to include radio programmes in partnership with Nabiina Community Radio, women rights and child rights advocacy and education, adolescent reproductive health rights and natural resource management. Three counselling centres have also been established in three locations to offer counselling services to the adolescent and their parents at Navrongo, Paga and Sirigu,” he indicated.
He commended the NGOs and individuals that are supporting the project to help reduce poverty in the area. The participants lauded the efforts of the NGO for implementing the initiative and complementing government’s plans at reducing unemployment among the youth in the area.