Life-changing News

Kayayei gets ultra-modern hostel, skills training centres

Vice President and NPP Flagbearer, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has inaugurated an ultra-modern hostel facility and a skills training and empowerment centre in Accra for head porters, known as Kayayei.
Located in Madina and Ashaiman in the Greater Accra Region, these multi-purpose facilities fulfill a 2019 promise by Dr. Bawumia to provide decent accommodation and support to Kayayei, moving them off the streets.
The initiative, which extends beyond accommodation to include a skills training programme, is a collaborative effort among various government agencies, private sector partners, and NGOs.
Speaking at the commissioning event, Dr. Bawumia expressed his delight in addressing the hardships faced by these marginalized girls and providing them with opportunities to improve their socio-economic status.
“I am honoured to be part of this initiative dedicated to empowering head porters, offering transitional job pathways, and enhancing their socio-economic status. It is a cause close to my heart as it addresses the plight of a marginalized segment of our society,” Dr. Bawumia stated.
Dr. Bawumia highlighted the severe challenges faced by over 100,000 head porters in Ghana, including homelessness, inadequate medical care, and daily harassment in urban areas.
He emphasized the moral imperative to intervene and uplift their lives through the Kayayei Empowerment Programme, which aims to provide both accommodation and pathways to self-employment.
The Kayayei Empowerment Programme, meticulously designed to offer holistic and sustainable economic empowerment, includes a three-week training for an initial cohort of 5,000 head porters.
The training covers essential skills such as baking and beading, along with soft skills in personal healthcare, financial management, and entrepreneurship.
Chief Executive Officer of YEA, Kofi Adjei Agyepong, has provided detailed insights into the newly launched Kayayei Empowerment Programme.
The initiative, which was launched by Vice-President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, aims to uplift head porters (Kayayei) by providing them with essential skills, decent accommodation, and new job opportunities.
Agyepong revealed that the program is being made possible through partnerships with various organizations, including the Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA), Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (CTVET), Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), Father Campbell Foundation, GetFund, and the Common Fund.

Addressing multiple challenges
Head porters across Ghana face numerous challenges such as lack of shelter, harassment, depression, inadequate medical care, and insufficient income.
The Kayayei Empowerment Programme is designed to address these issues by offering a comprehensive support system.
“Through the Kayayei Empowerment Programme, the government, via the YEA, will provide decent accommodation and equip these women with vital skills, enabling them to secure dignified jobs and support their families,” Agyepong stated.

Comprehensive training and support
The program will offer training in various skills, including baking, beading, and soap making, alongside essential soft skills like personal healthcare and financial literacy.
This holistic approach aims to ensure the overall development of the participants.
“Our programme adopts a rigorous recruitment process, offering training in crucial skills and covering essential soft skills to ensure holistic development,” Agyepong said.
The initial phase of training aims to empower 5,000 head porters, starting with batches of 600 at dedicated residential facilities in Madina and Ashaiman.
Participants will receive stipends of GHS 1,000 per month during their training to compensate for any loss of income, allowing them to fully commit to the program without financial strain. Agyepong emphasized that the YEA is committed to these payments and currently does not owe any beneficiaries.

Kayayei, Newscenta

Post-training opportunities
Upon successful completion of the training, participants will receive starter packs to help them venture into new economic opportunities.
The programme will also offer ongoing support to monitor and evaluate the progress of these women as they explore further educational and business opportunities.
“Their commitment does not end with the training. We will continuously monitor and evaluate the programme, providing ongoing support as these women explore further educational and business opportunities,” Agyepong assured.

Tackling unemployment through skills training
Agyepong highlighted the government’s commitment to empowering young people through skills training as a key strategy to address unemployment.

Training Skills, Newscenta
“For us at YEA, we find skills training as the best antidote to the never-ending unemployment challenges we face as a country.”
The Kayayei will also undergo entrepreneurial skills training to prepare them for skilled jobs and self-employment. Registered trainees will receive a monthly allowance of GH₵500 during the training period and starter packs upon completion, which will include product specifications to guide them in setting up their own businesses.
The Kayayei Empowerment Programme marks a significant step towards improving the socio-economic well-being of head porters in Ghana, offering them the tools and support needed to transition into more stable and prosperous livelihoods.
Post-training support and a track-and-trace model will ensure participants receive starter packs to help them transition into new economic opportunities, preventing their return to head portering.

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