A good start: setting up packages for graduates
The Vocational Training Centre was established to provide a holistic training environment for former street girls and girls with very poor family backgrounds interested in learning and making a living out of dressmaking and hairdressing. The VTC was opened in 2013 with the admission of the first set of girls into training. Since then over 40 girls have graduated successfully from the programme and are now working independently.
A group of 9 girls will be graduating by the end of 2020. The girls are preparing for their NVTI (National Vocational Training Institute) exams. The previous groups have been very successful in these exams, which provided them with a nationally recognised certificate for the skilled vocation of dressmaking. The girls are also gaining real life experience through work placements with private sewing shops around the VTC. Upon graduating, the girls will leave the VTC and start living on their own and earn an independent income.
The trainees do not have the capital needed to start a business of their own. To give them a good start as independent seamstresses we want to give them set-up packages. Such packages include a sewing machine, locking machine, sewing materials, iron and working tables. The girls have saved 15% of the needed capital themselves, and we add the remaining 85%. This will enable the graduates to start their own business, without having to take a loan to even start working. In addition, the girls will be visited at their new homes several times during the first 6 months to mentor them through the initial start-up phase, advise them on their business strategies and help solve problems that arise during this period.
A Good Start 2017
** Update May 2017 **
The graduation of these girls is just one week away; 13th May! Two years ago they were living and working on the streets of Kumasi, now they are professionally qualified dress makers and well equipped to start making an independent life. Some will start work in established shops while others will set up their own business. The contrast in the facial expressions on the photos speaks volumes: Picture on left: First day at the training centre, 2015. The faces express uncertainty and doubt of the future. Picture on right (2017): Ready for a future of hope and happiness!
This project is supported by
Wilde Ganzen and
Emmaus Bilthoven, amongst others.
A Good Start 2016
Sometimes pictures say more than words!
These ladies have come a long way – leaving the streets, 2 years of intensive vocational training, studying hard and pushing through. The hard work paid off and they are now proud graduates with a NVTI (National Vocational Training Institute) certificate. We provided the girls with setting up packages to enable them to start work. They now have the needed knowledge, skills and capital to start a successful career. They already started work and are making an independent living. Most of the ladies returned to their communities in the North to build up their life there, while others chose to remain in Kumasi. The girls are contacted regularly to monitor how they are doing.