While a lot of attention has been given to the practice of democracy at the national level the world over, the same cannot be said for local democracy in Ghana. Consequently, the situation is a reflection of the gap we see in youth participation in governance at the national and regional levels. This then is a clear indication that Ghana stands a chance to see a significant change in the latter if youth are engaged to participate in governance right from the local level.
To ascertain the level of understanding of local government issues among the youth, and the extent of the integration into the process, the Youth Bridge Foundation in 2012 under the auspice is of Management Systems International has undertook a study in Mpohor Wassa East District Assembly, Nzema East Municipality and Tarkwa Nsuayem Municipality, all in the Western Region to determine the understanding of the processes of policy formulation and decision making above the implementation and formulation of these policies and decisions.
Following this, the Foundation in 2021 is undertaking a nationwide project by the Czech Republic in building the capacity and promoting inclusive participation of youth in local governance and decision-making processes through the latter’s ‘Transition Promotion Program’. The national project will involve discussions and engagements with stakeholders through identified representatives from Local Authorities and youth groups in Nsawam and Suhum in Eastern Region; Bakpa in Volta Region; Tolon, Savelugu, Sagnarigu and Tamale in Northern Region; Ellembele and Nzema East in the Western Region. Through advocacy and awareness creation among youth constituents using regional capacity training and workshops, the project will seek to improve the confidence of youth to:
- Engage meaningfully and effectively with the District Assembly to Promote accountability through district level tracking and monitoring of local governance processes by the youth
- Organize a 2-Day Capacity Building Workshop + field visit for youth groups on Training of Trainers Basis to identify entry points for youth participation in local governance in the Eastern Region
- Advocate for youth friendly institution and processes at the Local level
The Transition Promotion Program is the Czech Embassy’s initiative aimed at supporting democracy and capacity building in Ghana.