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21.10.2007 General News

Ghanaians reminded of objective of ICCES

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Ghanaians have been reminded that the objective of the Integrated Community Centres for Employable Skills (ICCES), was to equip the youth with vocational skills to enable them to contribute meaningfully to national development.

This would help them to establish their own businesses to prevent the urban-rural drift and streetism and other social problems.

Mr. Seth Victor Apraku-Mensah, the National Director of the Integrated Community Centres for Employable Skills (ICCES), gave the reminder at a day's stakeholders' workshop, organised by the Ashanti Regional Secretariat of the ICCES, in Kumasi at the weekend.

The event, attended by instructors, centre managers, chiefs, Queens Mothers, members of parent and teacher associations and other stakeholders, was under the theme: "The Role of Stakeholders in ICCES Quality Training and Improved Employment Outcomes."

Mr. Apraku-Mensah said the Centres were community-based and urged communities and district, municipal and metropolitan assemblies to provide the facilities with tools, equipment and infrastructure to enhance teaching and learning.

He gave the assurance that government through the Ministry of Manpower Youth and Employment would do its best to provide logistics to the Centres to enable the facilities adequately prepare the youth for the National Vocational Training Institute examinations.

Nana Anthony Boateng, the Ashanti Regional Coordinator of the ICCES, said there were 14 of such Centres in the region that offered carpentry and joinery, dressmaking, hairdressing and other courses and had a total enrolment of 1,000 students with over 70 instructors.

He mentioned some of the communities with such centres as Tetrefu and Twedie in the Bosomtwe-Atwima-Kwanwoma District, Nnerebehi in the Atwima Nwabiagya District, Otaakrom in the Atwima-Mponua District and Amoawi in the Offinso district.

Nana Boateng appealed to government to pay the salaries of all instructors working at the Centres and to provide vehicles to improve transportation systems of the Centres.

During an open forum, the stakeholders appealed to the communities where the facilities were located to organise periodic fund-raising to support the Centres.

They appealed to the ICCES regional Secretariat to intensify its education on the relevance of ICCES so that the youth could enrol in such centres to enable them to acquire vocational skills.

Mr. Kwadwo Gyasi, Budget Officer of the Ashanti regional Coordinating Council, appealed to government to provide graduates of the Centres with funds and tools to enable them set up their own businesses after their training.