The Twins Cities in Sustainable Partnership Project (TCSPP) has constructed an ultra -modern urban skills and training laboratory for the youth in the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly (STMA) to acquire employable skills.
This would help accelerate job creation and development in line with climate smart principles.
The Urban Lab would deploy green and climate smart production technologies, in plastic waste recycling, eco-friendly ovens and bio-digester construction to the youth of Sekondi in the Western Region.
Financed by the European Union, it is a component of the three- year Twin Cities in Sustainable Partnership Project, implemented by the STMA, and the city of Palermo in Italy, to improve urban governance among other factors.
The Lab was jointly opened on Wednesday by the European Union Head of Infrastructure Development in Ghana, Ms Paulina Rozycka, and the Chief Executive of STMA, Mr Abdul-Mumin Issah.
Mr Aziz Mahmoud, the Project Coordinator, TCSPP, who led a tour to the facilities, said the Urban Lab would train 150 beneficiaries from vulnerable groups, including unemployed women, young people, returnees and potential future migrants in biodigester technologies, ecofriendly oven production and plastic recycling.
The trainees would be engaged to construct 500 bio digester toilets and 100 eco-friendly ovens for households in low -income coastal and fishing communities, respectively, as part of measures to resource them to become self-employed and set up micro and small/medium sized enterprises.
Mr Abdul- Mumin Issah expressed gratitude to the EU for the massive injection of financial and technical resources into the STMA to develop skills, talents and traits for the overall growth of the metropolis.
He said the training was in line with the Government’s agenda and EU’s commitment to addressing unemployment, environment degradation and mitigation of adverse effects of climate change on livelihoods through green businesses.
The recycling of low value plastic waste into pavement and interlocking blocks would ensure affordable materials for construction, biodigester toilets in low- income communities and ecofriendly ovens for fish processors, to address smoke pollution and associated illnesses.
Mr Issah said helping the vulnerable to get the right skills would be the focus of the centre, adding; “Teaching employable skills will ultimately curtail the spate of unemployment.”
“The training modules of the centre have been carefully put together to address the menace of plastics, open defecation and hazards to fish processors through excessive smoke, presenting numerous opportunities for the youth.”
In addition to the centre, TCSPP had also constructed an Urban Agriculture Demonstration Site.
Already 200 unemployed women, youth, returnees and potential future migrants, had been trained in crop production, animal husbandry and aquaculture to become self-sufficient, he said.
The training, Mr Issah explained, was in response to the increasing demand for healthy vegetables due to the flourishing hospitality industry in the country.
Ms Rozycka, on her part, commended the project implementation team for working within the timelines to deliver such a world class lab to give economic hope to Ghanaians.
“I am happy that the Centre had been successfully completed and on time as part of TCSPP to improve upon sanitation, mitigate climate change and promote equity an employment.”
She expressed the belief that the centre would equip the youth with the necessary skills to build a green local economy and healthier communities in the Metropolitan Area.