ONE hundred and eighty young persons in the Obuasi municipality are undergoing training in various skills under the Sinapi Aba Trust and the Obuasi Municipal Assembly's Youth Apprenticeship Programme.
The programme is a strategically designed youth-centred intervention that seeks to comprehensively address the employment and health needs of the unemployed youth by equipping them with employable and entrepreneurial skills as well as education on HIV/AIDS and its prevention.
It brings to 210 the number of beneficiaries of the programme in the municipality.
The training covered hairdressing, dressmaking, plumbing, electrical installation, welding and fabrication, carpentry and auto mechanics.
On completion of the training, Sinapi Aba Trust would assist the trainees with capital to start their businesses.
As part of the training schedule, the youth are taken through education on HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases as well as other social vices to enable them live responsibly.
Last Friday, the Trust presented training tools worth about GH¢20,000 free of charge to the apprentices at a ceremony at Obuasi.
In a speech read on his behalf, the Chief Executive of the Trust, Mr Anthony Gyasi-Fosu, said the company was delighted to commit some of its resources to reducing mass unemployment in the country as a way of transforming the lives of the people.
He noted that the situation of the unemployed youth in Ghana today demanded pragmatic and strategically designed interventions to turn around their life situations.
Mr Gyasi-Fosu stated that equipping the youth with vocational and entrepreneurial skills to make them employable either in paid jobs or in self-employment would give them a lifetime opportunity not only to earn a decent living but also to reduce their vulnerability to HIV/AIDS as they become economically independent.
The Youth Apprenticeship Programme was piloted in Kumasi in 2004 and replicated in Accra a year later.
Mr Gyasi-Fosu said as a result of the success story of the programme, seven districts and municipalities in the country were enjoying similar support.
He expressed the hope that the trainees would make good use of the tools presented to them.
The Deputy Municipal Co-ordinator for Obuasi, Mr Emmanuel Ntoso, said the assembly took great interest in fighting youth unemployment and gave the assurance that their partnership with Sinapi Aba Trust would be pursued with all seriousness.
He asked parents to invest in their children, since such an investment was worthwhile.
He further asked other companies to emulate the example of Sinapi Aba Trust to complement the efforts of the government in the nation’s development drive.