Walewale, North-East Region – September 8, 2023 – In a bid to empower female head porters (kayayei) from 10 communities in the West Mamprusi Municipality of the North-East Region, 260 individuals have received vocational training and starter packs, allowing them to establish their own businesses.
These women had migrated from rural areas to work as head porters in urban centres but returned to their home communities due to challenging experiences.
The vocational training initiative, which encompassed skills in hairdressing, makeup and decoration, and tiling, culminated in the successful passing of the National Vocational and Technical Institute (NVTI) Examinations.
As part of their graduation ceremony in Walewale, they were presented with starter packs, including makeup kits, sewing machines, hair dryers, weaving equipment, and electrical and tiling materials.
This effort is part of the Providing Livelihood Opportunities and Support for Kayayei Porters (KAYAPORT) project, a budgeted initiative with a total cost of $334,446.12. Approximately GH¢400,000 was allocated for the procurement of the toolkits.
The primary objective of the KAYAPORT project is to provide opportunities for adolescent girls to achieve sustainable livelihoods and gain social acceptance within the municipality. Beneficiaries received certificates from the NVTI in recognition of their successful completion of the training.
Dr. Shannon Senefeld, the Senior Vice President for Overseas Operations at CRS, emphasized the organization's commitment to empowering young people to thrive.
She noted the risks and vulnerabilities faced by migrant girls working as “kayayei” and emphasized the project's goal to provide alternatives to this trade.
Mr. Zakaria Yidana, the North-East Regional Minister, commended KAYAPORT for its role in restoring the reputation of the region, which has been negatively associated with the “kayayei” label over the years. He encouraged community members to support the beneficiaries' businesses to ensure their success.
Rev Dr. Mrs. Comfort Asare, the Director of the Department of Social Welfare, lauded CRS for equipping young people with self-employment skills, which she believed would contribute to national development. She urged the beneficiaries to seize this opportunity for greater achievements.
Miss Fauziya Sulley, speaking on behalf of her fellow beneficiaries, expressed gratitude to CRS for providing them with alternative income sources, moving them away from the “kayayei” trade.
Reporting by Rosemary Wayo. Editing by Mariam Aminu.