Software giant Microsoft joined the International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD) to launch a project here on Thursday to support Ghana?s youth employment and entrepreneurship programs.
The project, dubbed ?Tizaa Works?, is aimed at facilitating employment and entrepreneurial opportunities of at least 10,000 youths in Ghana within a year.
Brat Smith, General Counsel and Executive Vice- President, Legal and Corporate Affairs of Microsoft, said the project aimed at using technology to empower youth at all levels to be able to find proper jobs and transform others into employers rather than employees.
?Technology can empower young people to make a vital contribution to their communities and our world. We hope that this platform serves as a bridge connecting Ghana?s young people to the tools and resources and people they need to find fulfilling careers,? Smith stated.
He said one thing people coming out of school needed to know was that they could find jobs when they knew where the jobs were and ?Tizaa Works can solve this problem in Ghana?.
?It uses technology in a new way, technology empowering people to do more than they have been doing before,? the Microsoft top executive stated.
The project, which is an online platform, has over 400 courses from its partners targeted at the youth for free in planning their careers.
This is done through career counseling, getting trained through mentorship and matching in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), entrepreneurship, curricula vitae writing and soft language skills.
Deputy Minister for Communications, Ato Sarpong, commended Microsoft and IICD for the initiative, saying:?The new platform will support initiatives put in place by government for youth employment and entrepreneurship.?
He said the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) center being established by government would create a lot of opportunities for the youth once their skill sets were shaped and sharpened for that market.
Dennis Zulu, Deputy Director for The International Labor Organization (ILO) Office for English Speaking West Africa, pointed out that one of the major challenges for youth in Africa and Ghana was skills mismatch.
?Youth are trained in skills that are not what the market desires; they do not have the opportunity to gather the needed experience for the job market, while the policy environment that enables job creation is also not right,? Zulu stated.
He described the right type of job as one that provides income security, social protection and the freedom of expression which will make an employee feel a part of the development and the growth of the business.
The ILO official urged the private sector to participate in the skill development of youth so that they could contribute to creating the right type of skills the markets were looking for. Enditem