GrassRoots Hub, an innovation and incubation hub in the Bono region, located behind the GNAT Hall, focused on impacting lives by training and empowering the youth, women, and the less represented groups within the Bono region.
GrassRoots Hub, in partnership with Ghana Tech Lab, has organized a Stakeholders Meeting under the theme: ‘The Role of Digitalizing Agriculture in Transforming the Local economy for Job Creation and Economic Development.
Speaking at a just-ended Stakeholders Meeting organized in Sunyani by GrassRoots Hub, in partnership with Ghana Tech Lab, under the theme: ‘The Role of Digitalizing Agriculture in Transforming the Local economy for Job Creation and Economic Development, on 10th June 2022, Mr. Clement Siaw, an Investment Banker with Data Bank said the time has come for the youth to pay special attention to technology particularly, AgriTech.
On his part, the AgriTech industry has the potential to employ millions of teaming youth who graduates from the various institutions of higher learning. He later cited the Bono region as the food basket of the country; charged individuals with innovations and technical know-how to focus on AgriTech. He opined that the Bono region, over time, has positioned itself well enough to get a substantial number of patronage if such investment was to come to the region.
Mr. Kwadwo Kyere, a representative from the Ministry of Agriculture – Sunyani, Bono region, buttressed this assertion and remained confident about his outfit’s readiness to partner with investors. According to him, the Ministry will follow due process to offer support in line with its mandate.
The participants were selected from various sectors of the entrepreneurship ecosystem and grouped under six pillars including; support, human capital, market, government and legislation, finance and media, and culture.
Diana Kwaaba, Manager of GrassRoots Hub, said her outfit has trained over 500 youth in entrepreneurship; she added that the Hub is Ghana’s first innovation lab and incubation space dedicated to social impacts, such as promoting the SDGs. She later added that the consultative stakeholder meeting is part of GrassRoots Hub’s mission to nurture social entrepreneurs and incubate and support innovations on SDGs and philanthropy for social good.
In his keynote address, Robert kwasi Oppong, Communication and Community Lead for GrassRoots Hub explained that the consultative stakeholder meeting was to bring stakeholders together in a collaborative manner to outline the challenges, gaps and opportunities in the existing market that will serve as a guideline to develop a comprehensive strategic policy to transform the agricultural economy.
During a focus group discussion, stakeholders discussed the bottlenecks that hamper the industry’s growth: Bad network, expensive data bundle tariffs, and the lack of education on cyber security featured prominently.
Stakeholders, however, offered recommendations like; soft loans for women- investors, cyber security training for the informal sector, among others, and later pleaded with GrassRoots Hub to implement them as the hub prepares to roll out this year’s Base Innovation Program (Cohort 6)! Which is due later in July 2022.
Government Agencies and Departments who were present also pledged their support in ensuring the recommendations yields the needed result.
During the final policy brief, Emmanuel Osrah, Finance Lead, GrassRoots Hub, eulogized participants for articulating their views and expressed his optimism about the impact of the session on the upcoming Base Innovation Program.