The Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG)has launched a Programme for the youth dubbed: ‘Raising Young Presbyterian Entrepreneurs’ (RYPE) in Koforidua, Eastern Region.
The Raising Young Presbyterian Entrepreneurs Project is designed to support the young Presbyterians to explore creative and innovative opportunities to think through, develop and create their own businesses.
It also aimed at reducing the over-reliance on non-existent public sector jobs and opening up new avenues of growth and productivity for the youth.
The project’s target for 2023 is to reach out to a thousand young persons with information and
training on various entrepreneurship processes.
The RYPE application portal was opened for the youth in the Church aged between 15-35 years to apply for capacity-building skills as well as seed funds to promote their entrepreneurial activities.
The Right Reverend Professor Joseph Obiri Yeboah Mante, the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, said the Church is focused on fulfilling a holistic mission as commanded by Jesus Christ in the Bible.
He traced the roots of entrepreneurship development to the very beginnings of the Church, where the Basel Mission training curriculum was based on a philosophy of education that targeted the training of the head, heart, and hands.
He said: ‘The head was trained for general knowledge, the heart for the Gospel and the hand for skills development’.
‘This was holistic education that trained the whole being and prepared them to serve as true witnesses
of Jesus Christ to the world,’ he added.
Rt. Rev. Mante said: ‘The beneficiaries of these training regimens, whether adults or children were expected to be Spiritual, Moral, Social, and Environmental/Economic Witnesses’.
He noted that the majority of the Church members were under the age of 30 years, so there was the need to put in measures that would support young persons to maximize their entrepreneurship and explore the opportunities to implement their ideas.
That, he said, formed part of the environmental and economic witnesses of the Church.
‘We want to see our young people setting up viable businesses, creating sustainable jobs, and making a lasting impact in society and the Church as a whole,’ he added.
The Moderator said while they concede that Government alone could not address all those challenges, ‘ l want to submit that if the Church does not seek to address the needs of the teeming
youth, then it is not ready for the future’.
‘It is in light of this that we want to specifically place emphasis on this aspect of our mission and focus on creating more young entrepreneurs,’ he said.
Mrs Rebecca Teiko Sabah, the National Director for Development and Social Services, an NGO umbrella of the Church, stated that the intervention was critical to address and respond to current youth unemployment demands and felt needs.
‘ Last year, the PCG kick-started the process with a Public Lecture that focused on job creation for the youth.
‘ Various speakers and representatives of the Government addressed the forum on the issues at stake. This year, we want to walk the talk and that is the reason we are here today to launch this project,’ she said.
She said already they had started with monthly online webinars and face-to-face Entrepreneurship
Clinics across the country.
Mrs Sabbah said the ultimate target was to support individual young persons to design and develop new businesses and/ or grow existing ones.
The National Entrepreneurship Committee Chairperson of the Church, Dr Alexander Tetteh Nuer, indicated that RYPE was part of their mandate to tackle youth unemployment, which has security implications as well.
The programme has the objective of supporting skills development and innovative entrepreneurship acumen for job creation.
He outlined the components of the programme as assisting the selected youth to establish viable businesses, and their capacity strengthened to create jobs and grow businesses within the Church and Communities.
Others include having access to high-class coaching from experienced Christian business professionals for six months; Start-up capital
awarded to the best projects; up to 200 individual young persons supported to design and develop new and/ or grow existing businesses.
The National President of the Young People’s Guild, Mr Edwin Osei Ahwireng, thanked the Moderator and the leadership of the Church for the great initiative meant to empower the young people in the Church.
He promised to mobilise his group to fully participate in the programme to enhance their livelihood.
Source: Ghana News Agency