The Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA) and Mondelez International Cocoa Life, a global organisation, has launched a project to support 436 youth to venture into businesses in the cocoa sector.
Under the one-year project named ‘Youth as Farm Service Providers’, the beneficiaries from Upper and West Akyem and Awutu Senya, in the Eastern and Central regions would be given funds and technical support.
The beneficiaries who are grouped in 44 groups were selected from cocoa growing communities based on their own interest after studies were conducted under Mondelez International’s global cocoa sustainability programme.
Speaking at the launch, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GEA, Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh stated that the project is in line with the government of Ghana’s initiative to sustain the entrepreneurship sector with focus on the youth.
The Chief Executive Officer averred that the government alone cannot improve entrepreneurship, thus needed other organizations such Mondelez International to step in and offer support.
Mrs Yankey-Ayeh noted that it is important to create a well sustainable cocoa sector by grooming the youth and ensuring that they are given the right resources and tools to work.
“The interventions will include technical skills upgrade, entrepreneurship training, and business management training”.Mrs Yankey-Ayeh
According to Mrs Yankey-Ayeh, although many of the young entrepreneurs understood the technical aspect of their businesses, it was about time they are supported to unleash their entrepreneurial side to improve their businesses.
The project, Mrs Yankey-Ayeh opined that it would allow the youth to realise the importance of the sustainability and profitability of venturing into the cocoa sector.
Cocoa Farmers to Earn More Revenue
“The launch of the project will allow the youth to realise the importance of the sustainability and profitability of the venture and support the work of the cocoa sector”.Mrs Yankey-Ayeh
On her part, the Country Lead for Cocoa Life, Mrs Yaa Preprah Amekudzi, noted that the project would seek to provide the skills, finance, and access to lands for the youth in order for them to make a living out of cocoa.
In order to ensure the sustainability of cocoa production, Mrs Amekudzi stated that her outfit is involving the youth in the cocoa production chain to help nurture their interests and creativity.
“Without the youth getting involved in cocoa, we cannot look at a future of cocoa production in which the youth have the energy”.Mrs Amekudzi
In the intervening time, cocoa remains the number one foreign exchange earner for the country. This partnership would help the youths earn more income, especially, as the Executive Secretary of the Cote d’Ivoire-Ghana Cocoa Initiative, Mr Alex Arnaud Assanavo, has pledged to secure decent incomes for cocoa farmers in the two countries in honour of their toils and for the sustenance of the industry.
Mr Assanavo indicated that it was right that cocoa farmers in Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire were properly remunerated to compensate for their investments to motivate them to sustain and increase production of the crop.
“The vision of the initiative is to move the value from cocoa production back to cocoa farmers in the two countries; it is to increase the revenue of farmers.”Mr Assanavo