The Mastercard Foundation and National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) has entered into a GH¢78 million three-year partnership to increase employment opportunities for young people in the country.
The Mastercard Foundation is an independent governing body whose work is guided by its mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion for people living in poverty.
Mr Kosi Yankey – Ayeh, Executive Director of NBSSI, in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the partnership, forms part of Young Africa Works in Ghana scheduled to commence in January 2020.
He said this would create access to dignified work for about 39,000 youth and micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).
“Seventy percent of those targeted will be young women,” he said.
He said over the next 10 years, Young Africa Works would enable three million young people to access dignified and fulfilling work.
He said the partnership is aligned with the government’s Ghana Beyond Aid agenda and focused on transforming Ghana’s MSMEs into engines of economic growth.
“As a Young Africa Works partner, NBSSI will provide growth opportunities for existing young entrepreneurs by facilitating access to finance, markets and business development services,” he said.
He said this would equip participating youth with digital, vocational and life skills whilst also leveraging technology to connect jobseekers with opportunities.
“The project will leverage existing NBSSI flagship programs such as the Apprenticeship to Entrepreneurship (A2E), Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship (ICE) Hubs, and the Kaizen Programme,” said the Executive Director of NBSSI.
He said the programme would be delivered through the 178 Business Advisory Centers/Business Resource Centers across the country and in collaboration with other Young Africa Works partners.”
Mr Nathalie Akon Gabala, Regional Director, Western, Central and Northern Africa, Mastercard Foundation, said: “NBSSI has the largest footprint of any agency in the country through its work with entrepreneurs and women-led businesses”.
He said with its presence in 178 districts across the country, they are uniquely positioned to help advance Young Africa Works’s objectives to ensure young people secure work that is both dignified and fulfilling.