In Gbawe community in Ghana women constitute a significant proportion of contributing family workers. They are less likely to engage in wage employment than men, and when they do, they are more likely to hold part-time, seasonal and/or low-paying jobs in the informal economy. The proposed project aims to improve financial conditions of women in Gbawe community by offering and supporting entrepreneurial opportunities among them. The project will assist youth and women in creating a community network that will generate project capital. It will also provide intensive literacy and financial knowledge training sessions to help build capacity for innovative initiatives. In the end of the training, participants will be equipped with skills to establish and run their own enterprises in the community. The project is to support 120 youth, women and single mothers to establish their own profitable enterprise
Children and youth are often forced to drop out from schools and academic programs due to their family’s financial situations. In many cases, children have to leave school because single mothers can’t afford to take care of them. This has given rise to antisocial behavior and increasing mental health problems among young people.
Youth in Gbawe believe they do not have any future opportunities in the region.
GEN was introduced to support youth and women in the Gbawe community in 2012 as microfinance program and 7 women were benefited. In 2013 additional 8 women were supported to make total beneficiaries from 7 to 15. It was a project we partnered with one microfinance company in Ghana who providing the funding to the members at GEN and PAAJAF served as the coordinator of the funds.
This project helps youth, women and single mothers to start their own profitable enterprise. It provides capital for entrepreneurship through a project called Gbawe Entrepreneurs Network (GEN). GEN helps unemployed youth and women create capital through a community network.
It provides two activities to beneficiaries in this project throughout the project timeline:
- Capacity Building
- Capital creation Loan
Why capacity building?
This is project plan that has a package with two activities:
- Literacy Training
- Business Management Training
- This is a four week training,/3 times a week, followed by training every two weeks till end of project timer.
- It will be conducted to each year new beneficiaries.
- It will help them to be able to read and write those who could not get change to go to school and are unable to even identify English alphabet and not able to read or write, to be able to identify, read and write. Under this literacy training, the participants will leaning English language, basic mathematics and health issues.
Business management training:
- This will be conducted in the second year till third year of project., as a training every two weeks.
- It will be conducted to last year beneficiaries. (who finished the literacy training )in the past year
- It will train beneficiaries on basic bookkeeping in accounting and other business records filing, debt financing, opening of bank account and reporting.
Capital creation loan:
The goal is to support 120 beneficiaries through in-kind products worth $500 each, who have received or receiving capacity building training under this project.
And this is how it works:
- GEN open registration.
- Related year targeted beneficiaries will be selected (20 in first year, followed by 50 in second and 50 in the third year). Priority here given to women having their children at Family Learning Center at PAAJAF and who struggles to educate their children.
- Beneficiaries divided to 4 classes/5 each class
- Related training conducted.
- Member who have received at least 4 weeks intensive literacy training or business management training is entitled to receive in-kind loan that worth $500 within the network.
- When a member receives a capital loan, the amount is payable with a 5% annual interest. The re-payment of the loan is to be done in 12 months equal installment. The installment payments start after the first 8 weeks the loan has been received.
How installment payments are collected?
- After a 4 weeks intensive training of literacy or business management, the capital loan will be granted to members in groups and each group must have a group leader who will help to monitor and ensure collection of all installment payments in that group at a monthly GEN meetings for installment payments collection and capacity building.
- The funds are managed through PAAJAF’s bank account and bank receipts are submitted to the PAAJAF office for accounting records.
GEN members learn about debt, financial obligation, and financial planning.
GEN members have capital to establish profitable enterprises that can provide income to themselves and other locals.
In the longer term, entrepreneurs who benefit from GEN’s training will boost the local economy, and will be better able to provide for their families. It’s yet another way we help eradicate poverty through empowerment and capacity building.