By Alexander Nyarko Yeboah, GNA
Accra Sept 21, GNA — Twelve Ghanaian returnees have been given skills training and loan facilities to climb the entrepreneurship ladder as they settle in Ghana after going through gruesome experiences in foreign lands.
Beneficiaries of the programme, also include persons desperate to embark on risky journeys abroad, were given entrepreneurial skills to manage and prospect for ideas for investment and capital mobilization for self-actualization, community and national development.
This was made known on Friday during a presentation of loan facilities to 12 returnees at the CUA House, Accra, after they had undergone skills training and had come out with their own business proposals.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on the sidelines of the programme, the German Project Manager of Sparkassenstiftung fur Internationale Kooperation, responsible for West African Projects, Mr. Oliver Schuster, said the German and Ghanaian Governments embarked on this project because they wanted to help migrants in Germany as well as potential migrants here in Ghana to set up businesses and have a sustainable livelihood instead of going through all that risk.
Mr. Schuster informed that currently, training was ongoing across Ghana as well as other african countries with the intent that, if the participants came out with good proposals, “They would not only access loans, but also ideas and coaching on how to use the money in the best way. Then it is very important to pay back the loan so they could access another loan for other investments."
He said his outfit was into financial sector development in Africa and therefore was partnering with Ghana Co-operative Credit Unions Association (CUA) by offering training to the beneficiaries and then CUA would facilitate and disburse the loans to them after the training.
Mr. Schuster advised that “there is no other place like home and so it is good for you to look around yourself and observe what you can set up for yourself up. You go somewhere with limited means and once you do not have the opportunity to design the way you live by yourself, you are forced into jobs and situations you don’t what to be in.”
He added that, “It is better not to take that risk. In the cases I have heard, I feel the risk was much higher than the chances in the end, and therefore you shouldn’t take that risk.”
The Regional Coordinator of Sparkassenstiftung fur Internationale Kooperation for West Africa, Mr. Kwang-Yung Jung, observing why people could succeed in their businesses, said, “Being an entrepreneur is not a job, it is an attitude.So I hope that all the participants who joined our training would start their own businesses and take this opportunity to make a change in their lives.”
Mr. Jung informed that an entrepreneur was a business man at all times who did not have a private life but combined his private life with his job.
“So to understand the responsibility of opening your job is the key message from us," he stressed.
He said the participants left Ghana because they were hoping to find opportunities or better lives abroad, which most of the time was not true adding, ” If you are staying in Ghana to make Ghana a better place, then you have all the opportunities. “
He added that, “I know life is not always easy, but just running away and taking all the risk and jeopardizing your life, I would rather say try and stay behind and help your country grow. Some may say their countries are struggling and that their leadership isn’t good, but if you don’t start doing something, there would never be a change."
The Project Coordinator of “Support for returning migrants in Ghana,” Mrs. Maike Ewuntomah, informed that the training they gave to the migrants was interactive which comprised business simulation exercises involving micro business and savings training enveloped in entrepreneurship and financial literacy.
It involved, generic business training and business couching, where participants could work on their own business ideas and come out with proposals and budget and they knew exactly what they needed to either improve their business or start a new one, she said.
A representative of CUA, Madam Lydia Kisseih, speaking on behalf of the General Manager of CUA, observed that empowering the returnees would help create jobs and expand the economy adding,"It would also check the occurrence of social vices and stop others who would want to embark on such dangerous expedition.”
Madam Kisseih asked the beneficiaries to commit the resources to good use for maximum results.