Craft Pro Limited, a private firm which specializes in the export and production of handicraft, as well as provision of skills training and development in critical areas such as handicraft, business development and human resource capacity building in various trades and vocations is partnering the Ministry of Tourism to train and employ 10,000 Ghanaian youth in the country's hospitality industy.
Partners of the project say it is aimed at promoting efficient implementation of the project over a two year period.
The objectives of the project are to: train 10,000 youth in tourism and hospitality related skills, covering hotel and restaurant services, chefs, handicraft producers and sellers, food vendors, tourist information personnel, taxi drivers and tour guides.
Also to offer the trainees jobs in the tourism industry, through placements and direct employment in tourism establishment, as well as given access to micro-credit facilities for start-up tourism businesses.
Inaugurating a 13-member steering and monitoring and evaluation committee of the project dubbed 'Skills Development and Job Creation in the Tourism Sector' in Accra, the outgoing Minister of Tourism, Ms Akua Sena Dansua, noted that the project fits "into the ministry's human resource policy objective of building capacity of Ghanaians to take advantage of emerging opportunities in the tourism sector, whilst fulfilling the goals of the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda and the Tourism Act 817 aimed at job creation, income generation and poverty reduction through sustainable development of the tourism sector."
She was confident that the project would improve the poor service conditions existing in most of the country's tourism facilities.
In spite of the poor service delivery in the tourism sector, it saw an improvement in terms of arrivals for last year from 821,200 in 2011 to 903,300 in 2012 with corresponding receipts from US$1,548.3 Billion to US$1,704.7.
Ms Dansua stressed that the successful implementation of the project "requires collaboration between her office and other state agencies and departments whose activities relate directly with the human resource capacity building development objectives."
She continued "It is against this backdrop that a steering committee and a monitoring and Evaluation Committee have been set up to guide the implementation process to ensure that the desired objectives are achieved in a cost-effective and timely manner".
In line with the Ministry's policy objective of strengthening the research and data collection mechanism, a Monitoring and Evaluation Committee has also been set-up to constantly monitor and evaluate the implementation process, based on the project's inputs, activities, outputs and outcomes, the outgoing minister added.
The Terms of Reference for the Monitoring and Evaluation Committee include to prepare quarterly monitoring and evaluation calendar, highlighting the benchmarks and time lines; Collect, collate, analyse and disseminate information related to the project implementation to all stakeholders; and responsible for on-going evaluation i.e. the continual analysis during project implementation of project outputs, outcome and developmental impact.
The Executive Director of Craft Pro Limited, Mr Henry Kangah added that trainees of the project would be provided with toolkits including seed capital after the completion of their training.
He also assured the government that his company would deliver the project to the admiration of all the stakeholders of the novelty 'Skills Development and Job Creation in the Tourism Sector' project.