YIEDIE rewards 21 youths in construction with GH¢108,000
The Youth Inclusive Entrepreneurial Development Initiative for Employment (YIEDIE), through the Youth in Construction Enterprise Fund (YCEF), has presented a little over GH¢108,000 to 21 young and brilliant men and women to support their efforts in leveraging already existing economic opportunities in the construction sector.
The YIEDIE project is a five-year project to create economic opportunities in Ghana’s construction sector for economically disadvantaged youth, implemented by Global Communities in partnership with the MasterCard Foundation.
The beneficiaries include Eric Boadu Mensah, Jacob Tetteh, Josephine Affum, Moses Adjei, Abraham Obiri, Vincent Wise Tuo, Abdulai Tahiru, Hannatu Gariba, Benjamin Anyetei Anang, Dugbatey Richard Abayateye and Alhassan Ibrahim, all in Accra.
The others, from Sekondi-Takoradi are Patrick Inkoom, Dinah Acquah, Isaac Rockson Buabeng, Collins Minneaux Cudjoe, Joshua Kojo Sam, Gerson Amegashie, Eric Dagbala, Collins Awuah, and Franklin Apraku Azah.
The YCEF is granted on a competitive basis: 149 youth applied to the fund, and the final 22 recipients went through rigorous evaluation, including: a desk review of their business proposal; a presentation made to expert judges; and a site visit to their proposed shop locations.
Vera Kafui Mills-Odei, Project Director of YIEDIE, noted that the project is meant to unearth the best talent in the sector who would go on to become the industry big wigs.
“It is training young women and men in technical construction skills and helping youth to grow and start small businesses. It is also increasing collaboration and support amongst construction sector stakeholders to improve their enabling environment,” she added.
She explained that the YIEDIE project applies an integrated, youth-led market-systems model to improve the capacity of youth and service providers across the value chain.
Mrs. Mills-Odei explained that priority is given to business proposals that will enable the recipient to soon employ additional youth. “It is our hope that these young ones will start their businesses and gradually grow to employ three to five people and later in become the biggest players,” she said.
The sectors in the construction sector that benefit include carpentry shop, interior and exterior decoration shop, welding shop, electrical services and electrical products, aluminium and metal fabrication shop, retail of general building materials; and a landscaping business.
She added that all the youth who received the funds have already completed their stream of training: either 3-6 month technical apprenticeship or an 8-week detailed entrepreneurship training.
The YIEDIE project is being run in collaboration with HFC Boafo Microfinance Services, a subsidiary of HFC Bank; Youth Empowerment Synergy (YES) Ghana; Artisans Associations of Ghana (AAG); African Aurora Business Network (AABN); and the Opportunities Industrialisation Centre (OIC).