ACCRA (ILO News): The International Labour Organization (ILO) officially launched a project on skills development entitled “SKILL UP Ghana” on Thursday 28th March, 2019. The SKILL-UP Ghana Project aims to move the TVET system from a supply to a demand-driven system by building on existing structures and strengthening institutional resources to promote a better understanding of the skills demanded in economic sectors. The event was attended by dignitaries and representatives of the key partners and implementation agencies on the project as well as other very important stakeholders from academia, industry, development agencies and regulatory bodies in the Technical Vocational and Education and Training (TVET) sector.
Welcoming participants to the launch, Mr. Dennis Zulu, ILO Country Director thanked the Norwegian government for providing the funding and expressed the hope that the SKILL UP project will serve as the catalyst to making the skills development system in Ghana robust and responsive the skill needs of industry.
In a brief presentation on the project, the National Coordinator, Frank Kwasi Adetor remarked that in April 2018, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway and the International Labour Organization (ILO) signed a Programme Cooperation Agreement (PCA) on skills development following a request made to the ILO by the Council for Technical Vocational and Education and Training (COTVET). This partnership produced the Skill-Up Ghana project for the period covering 2018 – 2019, with a three lead objectives;
- Skills Anticipation- to prepare the skills of constituents and enable them take advantage of opportunities offered by recent global drivers of change while also addressing their local skills challenges;
- Skills System Building- to advice constituents on wider/broader skills reform
- Social Inclusion- to specifically target vulnerable individuals and groups, and ensure a total and deliberate inclusiveness drive in the skills development sector
The project also targets an overall expected outcome of ensuring more and better jobs for inclusive growth and improved youth employment prospects. The skills enhancement processes are also expected to assist selected member states including Ghana to build the capacities of their constituents and to emancipate TVET system from a supply to a demand-driven system by building on existing structures and strengthening the institutional resources to promote a better understanding of the skills needed in the labour market. Skills development systems at the national levels will be strengthened with a corresponding improvement in the skills development systems to match current and future labour market needs at sectorial levels.
The project was officially unveiled by Hon. Gifty Twum Ampofo a Deputy Minister of Education in charge of TVET together with the Executive Director of COTVET, Dr. Fred Kyei Asamoah and H.E. Ambassador Gunner Andreas Holm, Ambassador of Norway. Participants also expressed their support for the successful implementation of the project and stated their hope for a possible expansion of the project to cover other TVET sectors. They observed that the Skills-Up Ghana approach holds the potential of promoting ownership among stakeholders.
The Skill-Up Ghana project is being piloted in 3 out of the 22 sectors identified under TVET sector skills bodies (SSBs). The Government of Ghana has however pledged that the remaining sectors will receive equal attention guided by the expected gains/deliverables from the three sectors to be piloted under the Skill Up project. The three sectors include the Agriculture, Tourism & Hospitality and the Construction sectors.
The key implementation partners for the Skill Up project in Ghana include the COTVET under the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Trade Union Congress and the Ghana Employers Association.