THE BUSINESS Development Minister, Mr Mohammed Awal, has expressed the government’s unflinching support for the Starr Woman Dream Edition project, describing it as apt.
The project seeks to empower women entrepreneurs with disability to defy the odds and become successful at running business.
Also, it aims at promoting awareness of the systemic issues facing women entrepreneurs and to call on duty bearers to roll out policies to suit them.
This year’s project will focus on Savelugu and Yendi Municipalities in the Northern Region and a stakeholders’ forum will be held in Savelugu on February 15, 2018 in that regard.
Speaking Friday February 8, 2018 when the Starr Woman Dream Edition project team paid him a visit in order to present him findings of a research commissioned by the EIB Network and conducted by Hope for Future Generations (HFFG), Mr Awal said the initiative was in line with the government’s resolve to equip all and sundry with employable skills.
“The project is in line with the President’s vision in terms of entrepreneurship and the government wants the youth to see themselves as job creators instead of seekers,” he noted.
“We agree with you on this project and we will work collectively together to ensure positive response,” he pledged.
The team led by EIB Network’s Managing News Editor and project leader, Mrs Eyram Bashan thanked the Minister for receiving the team on “such a short notice.”
The Bashan-led team also met with the Chief Executive Officer of Youth Employment Agency (YEA), Mr Justin Kodua Frimpong to brief him on the project and solicit his agency’s support.
Welcoming the team, Mr Frimpong lauded the team for the “brilliant” initiative aimed at addressing unemployment issues characterised with disability.
“I look forward to working hand in hand with the team to boost employment for economic development,” he assured charging the team to bring proposals on how best “we can create programmes to uplift the vulnerable in the society.”
At the National Council on Persons with Disability, the Executive Director, Mr Dennis Kwamena Dadzie expressed great joy on how the project intends to help persons with disability to thrive in business.
The research commissioned by EIB Network and conducted by Hope for Future Generations (HFFG) revealed that majority of People with Disabilities (PWDs) in the Northern Region face serious challenges in relation to access to entrepreneurial, economic and livelihood opportunities.
This, according to the research, makes it difficult for them to save since their monthly expenses are much more than their income. The research which focused on the Savelugu and Yendi districts in the region revealed that most of the participants are skilled but they need adequate funds to operate.
“Out of participants who receive monthly income, 60.5%, representing 23 females, have incomes that are between GH$ 100 to GH$ 500,’’ the report disclosed.
It stated that PWDs find it difficult to get access to entrepreneurial services in these two districts, stating, ‘’the challenge, however, is that, these services are difficult to access and also do not have.’’
From the research “57.9% of the participants indicated that it is quite difficult to access these services even though some of them (Soap making, Beads making, Tailoring and others) exist.
‘’Social and entrepreneurial services are difficult to find in these districts and even if one finds them, the funds needed to startup is a challenge,’’ the research stated. “Aside entrepreneurial jobs, it is difficult to search for jobs. The few participants who have tried to access jobs always find it difficult to get because they are not treated equally,” it added.
The Starr Woman Project Dream Edition is spearheaded by Starr 103.5 FM together with its sister stations in partnership with STAR Ghana and it is a three-year advocacy drive seeking to significantly rectify the profound disadvantages and challenges faced by women entrepreneurs with disability and to promote their participation in economic spheres of this country.