The Youth Inclusive Entrepreneurial Development Initiative for Employment (YIEDIE) has supported some 55 youth in entrepreneurship with cash and tools to facilitate their business start-ups.

Twenty-two of the beneficiaries received various amounts of cash while the rest received tools critical to their businesses.

YIEDIE is an initiative by Global Communities that seeks to project designed to create economic opportunities in Ghana’s construction sector for economically disadvantaged youth.

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YIEDIE Project Manager, Kafui Vera Mills-Odoi, said since the start of the five-year project in 2015, it has supported 279 businesses in Accra, Kumasi, Takoradi and Ashiaman.

Total funding administered to the beneficiaries has been estimated at more than GH¢1.7 million.

She revealed that GH¢277,800 was spent to support the 55 beneficiary youths that who were awarded last week Thursday.

Youths in the business of aluminium fabrication, draughtsmanship, tiling, painting among others, received the support.

Funding for YIEDIE comes from the Mastercard Foundation and implemented by the Global Communities as the lead partner.

She said the issue of the importation of artisans from neighbouring countries showed that the country was deficient in numbers and also some or a major part of Ghana’s artisans were not prepared to enhance their skills.

She said the issue of skill-building is a long term objective and urged the beneficiaries to spend more time in enhancing skills acquired through the project.

“We are seeing a new dimension in what we are looking at as skills development but a lot more has to be done and a lot of opportunity should be given for these people to test their skills,” she said.

On his part, Mr Emmanuel Sin-nyet Asigiri, the Chief Executive Officer of the National Youth Authority (NYA), commended the YIEDIE project implementers for the immense contributions made in the lives of the young entrepreneurs.

He said a glance into the construction industry in Ghana showed that the sector was being dominated by foreign nationals while young Ghanaians youth roam the streets.

He said moving forward the NYA would establish a relationship with the YIEDIE project, adding that “as a key government agency that is supposed to spearhead the development, we will put our heads together and see what we can do for the young people”.

Mr Asigiri urged the beneficiaries to serve as ambassadors in informing the other young people who have not made their lives productive to take advantage of these opportunities.

He said already the NYA has developed and would soon roll out similar projects to benefit 10,000 young people across the country.