Geolicraft secures over US$1m grant


…to establish crafts vocational training centre

Invest For Employment (IFE), an international financial institution, has supported Geolicraft Company Limited with a grant of over US$1million to establish a crafts vocational training centre for training rural women and youth in straw, wood products and fashion-designing.

This was after Geolicraft applied and satisfied all the grant requirement procedures.

At a groundbreaking ceremony at Dodowa in the Shai Osudoku district of the Greater Accra Region, Managing Director of Geolicraft Company Limited, George Akologo, said the country’s unemployment burden can easily be solved if the craft sector is given needed support.

According to him, the sector has potential to expand the country’s foreign exchange earnings due to high demand for craft products across the globe.

Mr. Akologo said demand for baskets, for instance, is an all-year-round market; and when properly harnessed could provide sustainable jobs for rural women, thus accelerating flows of foreign exchange into the country.

Managing Director of IFE, Rauf Khalaf, said the institution exists to assist businesses that have potentials and are capable of scaling-up to be real job creators.

He applauded Geolicraft for the initiative, and urged other small- to medium-scale businesses to apply for financial support to expand their businesses since the private sector remains the engine of Ghana’s economic growth.

The District Chief Executive for Shai Osudoku, Fred Offei, said the training centre has come at a time when the district is dealing with societal challenges – such as teenage pregnancies and high HIV/AIDS among the youth.

For her part, Head of Export Trade at Exim Bank, Judith Aikins, said the bank continues to support Geolicraft because of the company’s standing in the craft sector and how it is helping to alleviate poverty.

Under the project, hundreds of farmers will also receive skill development training in elephant grass cultivation and usage from external experts and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.

They will later be contracted to provide raw materials for Geolicraft and other companies in the region.

The training is open to anyone interested in the arts and craft sector.

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