The National Service Scheme (NSS) has introduced an online employability platform which offers user agencies the opportunity to make requests for graduates with specific skills or training to undertake national service with such outfits.
The ‘Flair Portal’ also offers stakeholders the opportunity to benefit from skill-matching information, which includes a course of study or profession, and serves as a database on information on national service personnel and user agencies.
The Executive Director of the NSS, Osei Assibey Antwi, made this known at a user agency stakeholder meeting on the Flair Portal in Accra last Friday.
The meeting attracted representatives from over 1,000 private companies and enterprises that use national service personnel.
It was on the theme: “Partnership for Efficient Service Delivery”.
Already, similar workshops have been organised for all tertiary educational institutions across the country on the new vision and platform.
Mr. Assibey Antwi described user agencies as formidable partners of the service scheme as it strives to attain the new vision: ‘Deployment for Employment’.
The NSS recently launched its new vision, with the aim of moving away from the previous mandate of just deploying personnel.
It has also held discussions with the Ghana Employers Association and the Association of Ghana Industries on its new vision.
Mr. Assibey Antwi noted that the NSS had decided to work assiduously with user agencies and other partners to ensure that the one-year period for the national service was used judiciously to provide top-up training for graduates.
That, he explained, was to ensure that service persons who undertook their service at other organisations gained skills that would make them employable, while the NSS, through its numerous modules, offered skills to many others.
“The shift in paradigm from purely deploying personnel for a year to an agency that offers permanent employment opportunities, as well as provide entrepreneurial and employment skills for the youth, has become necessary due to the increasing unemployment rate,” Mr Assibey Antwi said.
He explained that the new move was aimed at repositioning the scheme to retain some of its personnel after their national service and also ensure that those who went out to the world of work were capable and ready to create their own companies, employ others and or fit and ready to be employed.
Mr. Assibey Antwi mentioned some of the modules designed by the NSS to incubate national service personnel into global entrepreneurs to include the NSS-Ghana Tourism Authority Support programme, the construction of real estate and public facilities, agriculture and the NSS-Techlab partnership to design computer application systems.
He said henceforth, the over 30,000 national service persons who would be posted to teach at all educational levels would be given at least a month’s training, stressing that by the time they entered the classroom, they would have provisional teaching licences.
“There is a law in this country which frowns on teaching without pedagogic training. We have linked up with National Teaching Council (NTC), which is developing the curriculum that will be used for the short training,” he explained.
Aside from the training, he said, the NSS was partnering with T-Tel for funding to support the NTC to organise the training, adding that the NSS was arranging for funding to provide a 14-month online training that would give national service persons who will go into teaching professional diploma certificates in teaching.
In a speech read on his behalf, a Deputy Minister of Education, Rev. John Ntim Fordjour, said for the private sector, turnaround time was important, while it also abhored bureaucracies that dissipated time and resources, “so for the National Service Secretariat to introduce such a portal is commendable”.
He said the NSS had moved a step ahead as an effective public sector agency to provide the private sector the required support, so that they would be in a better stead to ensure stronger collaboration that would address their needs and that of the teeming Ghanaian youth.