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2019 Young Innovation Leaders Fellowship Opens In Accra   
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The Young Innovation Leaders (YIL) Fellowship has commenced its maiden leadership training for some selected young Ghanaian graduates who have demonstrated leadership, innovation and desire in their personal development, career and academics to solving problems in society.

The YIL-Fellowship is simply raising young professionals who can inspire, initiate, manage and lead innovation in the communities.
Out of the over 200 applications received for 2019 Fellowship, 21 young Ghanaians with excellent track records qualified for the four (4) months intensive capacity building training which is fully funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

They are graduates from 12 universities in nine (9) regions of Ghana, and from 23 different disciplines.

Speaking at the opening session of the training in Accra, the Country Director for the Young Innovation Leaders Fellowship, Dr. Anna Fokouh-Boadu indicated that the main aim of the Fellowship was to identify more young people and train, inspire, mentor and empower them to become agents of change in society.

“As we all know, there are certain problems that we are facing as a society and everybody is always talking about the problems, but what are we doing about those problems? Are we waiting for the government to solve them for us or are we waiting for foreigners to come and solve them for us?”

According to Dr. Fokuoh-Boadu, most of the problems were already known to the members of society, but not many people had the right practical solutions to them.

But with the ongoing training, the selected trainees she noted would be equipped with the requisite skills, knowledge and the right approach to solve those problems in society.

YIL-Fellowship Country Director noted that they would be trained in four major project areas: using ICT to improve agriculture in Ghana; water, sanitation and hygiene; innovation for early learning and digital health tools.

Dr. Fokuoh-Boadu said the trainees were grouped into four and each group assigned with mentors or special trainers.
The Founder of Young Innovation Leaders Fellowship, Dr. Obichi Obiajunwa said, the YIL Fellowship was a four-month annual leadership immersion programme in innovation management designed to empower young professionals to attain their ultimate career dreams and inspire innovation in their spheres, and to unleash human potentials and scale up excellence.

The 2019 Fellowship he indicated was structured to operate in two stages: a challenging but rewarding four-month programme focused on training in leadership and innovation management, and the mentorship and continuous personal development.
Dr. Obichi Obiajunwa said the fellows were expected to use the knowledge and skills they were acquiring to create changes within the society by undertaking projects to scale up the skills to benefit more people at the local levels.

Ms. Fareeda Latif, a Youth Fellow with UNFPA noted that her organisation was partnering YIL-Fellowship because their mandate fell in line with UNFPA’s vision of ensuring the potential of every young person anywhere was fulfilled.

She said the UNFPA would also provide technical hands on support to YIL-fellowship as the trainees moved into the communities later to work on projects.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Venture Capital Trust Fund, Mr. Yaw Owusu-Brempong, encouraged the youth of Ghana especially the young graduates to believe in themselves and focus on developing their potentials to become employers rather than employees.

According to him, majority of the Ghanaian youth were intelligent, have big dreams and excellent business ideas, but only lacked the confidence to transform those ideas into profitable ventures.
Mr. Owusu-Brempong also a renowned businessman said “the youth must know that you don’t necessarily need to come from a rich home to become somebody”.

“No matter how small your beginning is, you can achieve something for yourself with determination. And I am an example of a child born of poor and illiterate parents, attending so-called mushroom schools, struggling to pay school fees, and yet today I am the CEO of Venture Capital Trust Fund.

"I am a chartered accountant by profession, I have an MBA in finance, I have a first degree in economics and I have my own businesses. So looking at how and where I started from it would have been very difficult but with determination and honesty this is how far I have come”.

Dr. Mrs. Angela Ama Ackon, a Deputy Director for Pharmaceutical Services at the Ministry of Health and Dr. Charles Kwamena Ackon, the Managing Director of Mangel Klicks Company Limited, were present to inspire the fellows.
Source: Peacefmonline.com

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