Twenty-two young people from various parts of Ghana participated in a five-day SDG Youth Academy Workshop held at Anita Hotel, Ejisu Kumasi from 3rd to 7th February. Participants of the workshop were leaders of youth-led organizations who are part of the Voices of Youth Coalition. All participating organisations underwent an organizational capacity assessment (OCA) and undertook an online course on the Sustainable Development Goals before they were selected from among 160 organizations.
The Academy is an activity under the “SDG Youth Action Campaign” project dubbed Reposition. This is an ambitious youth-led initiative that seeks to revolutionize effective youth participation and demystify the development process for young people. The Reposition project is implemented by Youth Empowerment Synergy (YES-Ghana) and Danish partner – 100% for the Children with funding from the Civil Society in Development, Denmark. The project seeks to stimulate youth action right from the outset of the SDG and position youth as important actors in Ghana’s pursuit of achieving the SDG. The objective of the SDG Youth Academy is to build the participants and youth-led organizations capacities efforts towards the localization to the SDG in all their engagement at the community level.
Most of the work of the participating organizations includes advocacy. On day 1 participants used the Vision, Mission, Objective, Strategies and Action plan (VMOSA) model to explore how to develop strategic action plans and how to develop an initiative.
The Academy explored how to develop advocacy initiatives and how to influence policy on day 2.
The SDG Youth Academy participants on day 3 developed monitoring and evaluation plans for their initiatives. On day 4, the academy explored the SDG flashcards by GAIA Education endorsed by UNSESCO. This is the first time; youth have been trained to use the SDG flashcards in Ghana as multipliers of the SDG. The SDG flashcards ensures that real conversations are had on the SDG. It is also a catalyst for localizing the SDG in various communities. Each participant received a set of SDG flashcards to localize the SDG in their respective youth led organizations.
The SDG Youth Academy was crowned on the 5th day with fundraising training and culminated with the participants jointly developing a video application to CISU after they identified Climate Action (SDG 13) as a catalyst SDG for the achievement of the rest of the SDG.
The highly participatory Academy was Facilitated by Mr. Emmanuel Edudzie, the Executive Director of Youth Empowerment Synergy (YES-Ghana), Mr. Eric Saforo (YES-Ghana) and Camilla Nielsen Englyst of Civil Society in Development and 100% for the children in Denmark.
At the end of the training, representatives from youth – led organization were awarded certificates and charged to take action on based on the lessons learnt from the Academy.