YEFL-Ghana, a local NGO based in the Northern part of Ghana has supported 15 young people from the Northern Regional Youth Network to participate in the 2021 Harmattan School.
The event was organized by the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Consultancy Services (IIRACS), University for Development Studies (UDS) and their partners such as norsaac at the UDS International Conference Centre in Tamale, on 3rd to 4th February, 2021. Under the theme: From Best Practices to Best Fit Options: Addressing Youth Unemployment in Ghana.
As part of YEFL-Ghana core-mandate to empower young people in all aspect of life, deemed it necessary to involve young people in this event which seeks to bring together interest groups including Academia, Civil Society Organizations, Non-Governmental Organizations, Private Sector and Governmental Organizations to contribute to addressing the issue of youth unemployment with best fit options.
During the two-day event, the youth was seen contributing to discussions and interacting with officials from the Academia, the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Development partners, Religious leaders and the media on issues of youth unemployment.
Key issues discussed included; the role of agricultural modernization in addressing youth unemployment, the role of the National Youth Authority in addressing youth unemployment, enhancing youth employment through TVET skills development, youth unemployment and social security.
These youth contributed effectively to the discussion during the plenary session as they called for continuation of government programmes that are meant to provide jobs for young people irrespective of which government is in power.
In line with the youth plea, a communique was presented by participants which among other things stated that: over politicization of government interventions especially in social protection and agricultural must stop to make way for youth employment as well as the Ministry of Youth and Sports and other relevant bodies must provide state of the art equipment and requisite manpower for TVET to make it more attractive to the youth.
They further stated that, Government through the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) must invest more into planting for food and jobs initiative with special focus on agriculture commodity value chains development as well as promote the development of livestock value chain including the establishment of ranches to help create jobs for the youth and eliminate the persistent clashes between food crop farmers and herders.
The NRYN convener, Mr Inusah Mohammed Jackson said, to reduce youth unemployment, the youth must be given seats at the decision making tables to actively contribute to policies and interventions that best fit their potentials.
He urged young people to harness their potential and engage in productive ventures while they collectively advocate for enabling environment for young people to thrive.
The Harmattan School
The Harmattan School was instituted in 2007 by the University for Development Studies to provide a platform for civil society organisations, development practitioners, policy makers and researchers, on an annual basis, to meet and discuss pertinent development issues that affect northern Ghana in particular and Ghana as a whole. This event takes place every February to climax the Harmattan season.
Since the inception of the initiative, they have covered a varied range of important issues relating to our collective development, including multiparty democracy and inclusive governance in 2017, De politicization of education in 2018 and our shared responsibilities in ‘Ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for all’ in 2020.