Kumasi, Jan. 19, GNA - The National Youth Council (NYC) has since last year disbursed 2.4 billion cedis to eight vocational and youth training institutions nationwide.
Mr Joe Mantey, National Co-ordinator of the National Youth Council, who announced this at the opening of a five-day training of trainers workshop in Kumasi on Wednesday, named the institutions as the Afienya Youth Leadership Training Institute and Takorase Youth Leadership Training Institute.
The rest were Nerebehi Integrated Community Centre for Employable Skills (ICCES), Asankare Youth Leadership Training Institute, Asante-Akim Multi-Purpose Training Centre, Greater Accra Scrap Dealers Association, Issah Youth Leadership Training Institute and Sandema Youth Training Institute.
Mr Mantey said the implementation of the National Youth Fund had started on a pilot basis in 33 selected districts through the various vocational and technical institutions in the districts and it was expected that skilled youth groups and individuals would apply for the required funds.
Institutions, he said, could also source for the funds to operate economic projects, which in a way would render services to the communities in which they operate and also provide opportunities for increased practical training for the youth.
Mr Mantey said the government's transfer of the youth division of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports to the Ministry of Manpower Development and Employment was a clear manifestation of its determination to promote youth manpower development, job creation and to reduce unemployment and youth poverty.
"The fund is fashioned into government's basic philosophy of entrepreneurship development within the framework of wealth creation and income generation and it is therefore a comprehensive national youth poverty reduction programme that meets youth needs and aspirations", he said.
Mr Amankwa Frempong, Ashanti Regional Co-ordinator of the NYC, said the essence of the workshop sponsored by the Commonwealth Youth programme, African Centre, located in Zambia, was to equip the 26 participants with knowledge in entrepreneurship so that they could impart it to their students.
He said the objective of the fund was to provide financial and logistic support on credit basis to skilled youth groups and individuals pursuing or intending to pursue economically viable ventures. Instructors of National Youth Fund Pilot Institutes from Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo are attending the workshop.