Youth Challenge International (YCI) has presented the Catalyst Fund award to ten (10) female aspiring social entrepreneurs who are beneficiaries of Youth Challenge International HerStart program.
HerStart, Innovate the Future is an initiative designed by Youth Challenge International (YCI), in partnership with leading local organizations, like Norsaac with the goal to foster and create innovative solutions for a more equitable and prosperous economy within Ghana, Tanzania and Uganda.
YCI HerStart aims to build an enabling environment for social innovation and women’s social enterprise development, while increasing awareness of and support for social ventures. The theme for the event was “women’s economic empowerment through social entrepreneurship”.
YCI utilizes an economic empowerment approach as an entry point to addressing gender-based violence, protecting women’s human rights, and promoting leadership among young women. Speaking on the occassion of the award ceremony, Country Lead for YCI, Edmond Wisdom Quansah says YCI and Global Affairs Canada will invest almost $ 6million (CAD) and the capacity of 135 Canadian volunteers to support young women in Ghana.
Through this investment, YCI HerStart program will deliver training and business development services to ten thousand young women across Ghana, Tanzania, and Uganda. This intervention he noted seeks to improve the economic wellbeing of marginalized young women in northern Ghana in particular.
It also aims to increase marginalized young women’s access to economic opportunities and resources by harnessing the potential of young women to shape their future and leverage existing resources and programs to enhance inclusive economic growth and social impact for women in Ghana.
Young women entrepreneurs, in particular, face multiple challenges in establishing and growing businesses such as low access to capital, formal and informal barriers to land ownership, training, and education.
Mr Quansah has however called on the government to consider partnering with development partners and NGOs to implement key government interventions such as YouStart initiative that is in the pipeline.
The beneficaiaries expressed their appreciation to YCI for equipping them such skills. They say the money is going to be used judiciously.
This money that I have received today, am going to use it for my project and also employ and train young people to benefit the way i have benefitted”, says a beneficiary.
Source: Ghana/Tamale/ zaanews,com/Lilian D. Walter