Link Community Development, a charitable non-profit organisation, has enrolled about 250 deprived and out-of-school girls in the Nabdam District of the Upper East Region onto informal education.

The initiative, which seeks to empower the girls aged 15 to 19 years, is part of a four-year project dubbed; “Strategic Approaches to Girl-Child Education (STAGE)”.

It has funding support from the Department for International Development (DFID), a United Kingdom development agency, through the World Education.

The underprivileged girls would go through six to seven months tuition in literacy and numeracy as well as vocational training to empower them economically to live dignified lives.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency at Zanlerigu, one of the training communities, Mr Joachim Faara, the Project Coordinator for Link Community Development, said the informal aspect of STAGE was being implemented in only 10 communities in the Nabdam District.

He said 25 vulnerable girls in each community were benefitting from the seven months vocational training that would include bakery, dressmaking, weaving, tie-and-dye designing and hairdressing.

The girls would be supported to start their own businesses after training while those wishing to further their education in formal vocational schools would also be supported, he said.

Mr Faara said the initiative sought to offer some form of competencies and income generating skills to enable the girls fend for themselves.

The formal aspect of the STAGE project is being implemented at Bongo, Nabdam, Kassena-Nankana West and Bawku West districts for over 2,000 out-of-school girls, aged between 10 to 14 years, who would be mainstreamed into the formal education sector.

Mr Maxwell Divom, the Assemblyman-elect of the Zanlerigu-Daaliga Electoral Area, applauded the initiative to empower the girls and said it would go a long way to relieve them of extreme economic hardships.

He said most of them got married at the expense of their education due to poverty and other related factors and expressed the hope that the beneficiaries would take the training seriously and reap maximum benefits.

The girls expressed gratitude to the charitable organisation and said the training would afford them the opportunity to be provided with basic numeracy and literacy education as well as vocational skills.

Ms Beatrice Kihimbo, a beneficiary who plans to learn bakery, said as a result of poverty she got married without a profession and that the project would provide her with employable skills to generate income to take care of herself and family.

Link Community Development, now Link Ghana, was established in 1999 with the vision of offering opportunities to marginalised children, through education, to fight poverty.

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