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The Empower Project is a youth-focused project implemented by URBANET Ghana with sponsorship from the EMPower-Emerging Markets Foundation to support about 100 youth (70 females and 30 males) between the ages of 20 and 24 with green skills to improve their livelihood and provide employment opportunities for them. The project aims at Empowering Young People in Transformative Beekeeping within four districts in the Northern Regions, including Yendi, Central Gonja, and the Nanumba North and South districts. 

The project aligns with URBANET’s vision to empower young people, improve livelihoods, provide a means to mitigate unemployment among the youth, and especially support girls to reduce the time spent on unpaid care work to provide more time for them to concentrate on their growth. URBANET has identified the need to provide avenues for the youth to live to their full potential, acquire skills that are beneficial to them and their communities, and provide a space for them to develop existing business ideas as well as the tools to start new businesses. The Empower project is focused on beekeeping as a green skill and source of employment for the beneficiaries, as well as a way to empower them to explore the existing market space.

 The project will, before implementation, select beneficiaries across the four districts based on the chances of whether beekeeping can thrive and on sensitization by the project lead, the GESI Coordinator at URBANET, Madam Nimatu Siisu, with the assistance of project officers. With support from experts, beneficiaries will be taken through intensive training on beekeeping and honey-making, marketing, and branding. They will be provided with protective gear, boxes for beehives, necessary tools, exposure, and access to trade fairs and conferences.

The project will ensure that, during and by the end of its implementation, beneficiaries can master the techniques of beekeeping and honey making, train others within their communities, be self-employed, and be empowered to be change agents. Aside from these, the URBANET’s focus on beekeeping is also an effort to promote green livelihood options in the face of climate change and associated challenges to smallholder farmers, especially women and youth, within these communities and the country at large, as beekeeping has a positive impact on the environment as it serves as a source of pollinators for crops, especially shea and cashew plants.