Some 100 young people who benefitted from the Youth Economic Employment Program (YEEP), an initiative of MTN Ghana Foundation and Plan Ghana International have had their lives transformed a year after being trained and helped to start their own businesses.
A year ago, MTN Ghana Foundation committed GHc445,000 to support the training of the 100 out-of-school young women and men in Nsawam and Suhum districts in the Eastern Region with skills in mobile phone repairs to enable them generate income.
Their training included front end repairs, repair and rectification of mobile phones faults and basic customer service, and they were also given a branded kiosks and tools to help them as start-ups.
MTN visited the beneficiaries to assess their work, and this is what some of the beneficiaries had to say:
Diana Ohene Ansah said before the program, she was home doing nothing but now she has a job that gives her a steady income.
“Thanks to MTN, I’m not at the mercy of men looking to take advantage of needy and vulnerable women. Before the program, I used to ask my parents for money but now, I’m able to support my family and even save some money. This initiative has been so helpful, and I urge MTN to continue to help others especially the underprivileged,” he added.
A trader who took advantage of the project, Rosemary Mensah said she is now able to take care of her younger siblings who are in school.
“Things were very difficult for me and my family because I use to make money only on market days but with this business, I have another stream of income which helps me take care of myself and my family”, Rosemary said.
Luis Boateng, who is now a trainer with 11 trainees learning from him, expressed his appreciation to MTN Ghana Foundation and Plan Ghana International for the life changing encounter.
According to him, things are going so well with the business and he has people working for him, so, he is looking at expanding to other locations.”
Derrick Awatey, a beneficiary in Suhum, said through the YEEP intervention, he has been able to move out of his mother’s house to rent a place for himself.
“I can now afford my daily bread. I’m living a comfortable life and I’m able to save some money and it’s all thanks to MTN. I want to say a big thank you to MTN Ghana and Plan Ghana International”, he said.
Commenting on the initiative, the Economic Empowerment Advisor for MTN Ghana Foundation, Cynthia Mills said, the MTN Foundation is happy and impressed with how far the project has impacted the lives of the beneficiaries.
“It’s great to see these young ladies and gentlemen doing so well in their new businesses. Some of them have apprentices and have trained others who have also started their own businesses. Some have also added on other services like Mobile Money and selling of accessories to the phone repairs”, she said.
Cynthia Mills added that, there were ongoing engagements to upscale the project to benefit the youth in other regions as well as offer training in the repair of tablets and laptops.
The MTN Ghana Foundation since its inception in 2007, has implemented over 154 major projects in areas of health, education and economic empowerment at a total cost of US$15million. These projects are estimated to have impacted over 4 million people.