Women dominate the informal sector in Ghana but they also fall within the most vulnerable groups of people in dire need of economic empowerment.
Many of them lack the needed skills to become employable or build successful entrepreneurial ventures.
That’s where the Ghanaian social enterprise Basics International comes in to help with its recent initiative called Hedzole.
The initiative engages women, train them to acquire entrepreneurial skills and achieve economic success.
The produce bags and other hand-made products, which are exported abroad, raising money to provide for their economic needs.
Founded in 2000, Basics International originally focused on training and empowering young people.
The organization used education and training to empower communities to rise out of poverty and achieve social equality.
Its managers say the key to permanent change in various societies is not just to provide ‘aid,’ but rather to share wealth, information and resources to those less fortunate.
Led by its founder, Patricia Wilkins, the organization in 2020 was shortlisted among some 50 organizations to benefit from the New Economy Booster program launched in Ghana and Nigeria to support entrepreneurs who have ideas to support their countries recover economically amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Impact Hub and partners launched the New Economy Booster as a social enterprise program that seeks to support advanced and early-stage ventures, startups, non-profit organizations, and initiatives focused on solving Covid-19 related socio-economic problems.
The Hedzole initiative was able to make it into the Acceleration phase of the program which has 15 shortlisted businesses.
Patricia Wilkins said enlisting to be part of the New Economy Booster was to help her business model “become a sustainable business”.
She is hoping the Economy Booster will help her organization “scale up and become a sustainable organization.”
The American-born left her fashion-career in the USA to Ghana hoping to help left up the vulnerable.
BASICS has opened an Intervention Centre; a small refuge in the heart of Chorkor, a deprived community in Ghana’s capital, Accra.
It is providing care to the children of the community through school sponsorship, intervention and community outreach.