On the 12th of October 2023, a significant event took place in Sekondi-Takoradi.
The occasion was the commissioning of the Green and Climate-Smart Production Technologies Skills and Entrepreneurship Training Center.
The first speaker at this event was the Metro Chief Executive and Mayor of Sekondi-Takoradi, Honorable Abdul Mumin Issah. He shared details about the project, emphasizing that it was funded by the European Union through the Twin Cities Sustainable Partnership (E.C.S.P.P).
The project, spanning three years, aimed to enhance urban development, address climate change, and provide a safety net for vulnerable populations in these two cities.
This initiative, often referred to as the "Urban Lab," focused on training 150 individuals from various vulnerable groups, including unemployed women, youths, returnees, and future migrants.
The training covered a range of skills, including bio-digester technologies, eco-friendly production, and plastic waste recycling. Notably, the training emphasized the transformation of recyclable waste into pigments and interlocking bricks for construction.
Additionally, the Urban Lab provided instruction in designing and constructing biodigester toilets within local communities. This initiative also covered the creation of eco-friendly overloads for fish processing to combat pollution in this industry.
The training models were carefully designed to address the environmental hazards of plastic pollution and the challenges posed by excessive smoke in fish processing—the project aimed to construct 500 biodigester toilets and 100 eco-friendly overloads for households in low-income fishing communities.
The program focused not only on skills development but also on instilling an entrepreneurial spirit. The trained individuals had the knowledge and resources to set up small and micro-enterprises.
This approach aligned with the government's agenda to combat unemployment, environmental degradation, and the adverse effects of climate change on livelihoods through sustainable business practices.
In addition to the Entrepreneurship Training Center, the project included the establishment of an urban training site. Over 250 women, youths, returnees, and future migrants received training in crop production, animal husbandry, and agriculture.
This training was in response to the growing demand for healthy vegetables, driven by the flourishing hospitality industry and increased public awareness of the importance of consuming fresh produce.
Ongoing efforts are in place to provide further support to these trained individuals, empowering them to establish social enterprises in the agriculture sector and contribute positively to national development.
This event marked a significant milestone in enhancing skills and promoting sustainable practices in the region.
Mrs. Paulina Rozycka, the Head of Infrastructure and Sustainable Development in Ghana, expressed her appreciation for the construction workers' efforts and highlighted the importance of this project in combating climate change.
She noted that the project was a result of a partnership between the European Union and STMA to address climate challenges in green cities and housing. Mrs. Rozycka emphasized that the training provided in climate technology and sanitation not only helps combat climate change but also creates employment opportunities.
The project produces Bio Gas toilet facilities for Sekondi-Takoradi, contributing to the economy and improving sanitation, thus promoting healthier cities and economies.
Mrs. Rozycka highlighted the center's role in training individuals to recycle bio gases, which can be used in construction blocks, thereby reducing waste in cities.
The Master of Ceremonies, John Laste, acknowledged that STMA initiated the project in partnership with the European Union. He noted that the project, spanning three years, would provide valuable skills to the youth, benefiting not only them but also their families and the larger community.
Chief of Ahenkofi emphasized the importance of community support for the project and urged the engagement of youth in training to acquire valuable skills. He requested maximum support from the European Union to ensure the program's success, emphasizing the need for follow-through to see projects to completion.