Academic City University College, Ghana’s premier institution for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, and Entrepreneurship, has announced a partnership with Makelab and the Israeli Embassy to develop a makerspace to increase youth employment opportunities in the country.
According to reports, Africa’s youth population is growing and is expected to reach 2.4 billion by 2050. This demographic trend has significantly exacerbated the continent’s unemployment situation.
In this regard, the “MakeLab ACITY – Accra” makerspace, which will be located on the Academic City campus, is critical to the fight to improve youth employment in Ghana and beyond.
When completed, the initiative will make a significant contribution to providing more support for youth entrepreneurship, including business skills and connections with financial and in-kind support.
The centre will be open to the public and offer open-source access to the rapid prototyping, testing, and piloting of products and goods, including fabrication labs (fablabs), hackerspaces, hubs, and to some extent co-working spaces.
“We are pleased to collaborate with MakeLab and the Israeli Embassy to bring a world-class makerspace to the doorstep of the Ghanaian youth, which will go a long way towards promoting creativity and innovation and harness the energy of Ghanaian youth and partners to leverage on technology to create sustainable solutions to some of the biggest challenges on the continent of Africa” said Makafui Awuku, Technology and Entrepreneurship Centre (TEC) Manager.
“This project will go a long way toward achieving Academic City’s goal of fostering transformational leaders for the continent’s development,” he added. “We look forward to utilizing the centre once it is completed to address local issues in innovative and cost-effective ways.”
Avi Ostfeld, Founder of MakeLab Network, remarked, “We are delighted to be working with Academic City and the State of Israel to establish this second African MakeLab center. This is a great start here in Ghana.”
“MakeLab centers are here to foster creativity, which is the engine of innovation. MakeLab is the platform for everyone to come, use the tools and fabrication means, explore, create, share, and contribute back to the MakeLab Network community and the physical centers – which are being developed by the community itself,” he noted further.
On her part, H.E. Shlomit Sufa, Ambassador of Israel to Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, said: “We are excited to begin this partnership with Academic City University College and MakeLab. This project will enable us to share the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship and demonstrate the technological capabilities of Israel in a manner that will benefit innovators, creators, and entrepreneurs in Accra and all over Ghana”.