World University Service of Canada (WUSC) a Canadian non-governmental organization focused on economic empowerment of youth and women, is set to host a regional forum to highlight key results and learnings from one of its consortium projects, the West Africa Governance and Economic Sustainability in Extractive Areas Project (WAGES Project).
The WAGES project is co-implemented by the Center for International Studies and Cooperation (CECI) and funded by Global Affairs Canada (GAC).
The forum will take place in Accra between November 30 and December 2, hosting a wide array of dignitaries and strategic partners, including: the Canadian High Commission, Chamber of Mines of Burkina Faso, Ghana and Guinea, Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA) and Mineral Development Fund (MDF) and Ghana Extractive Industry Transparency initiative (GHEITI).
On the theme “Maximizing socio-economic benefits from Extractive Areas for Women and Youth Entrepreneurs – Connect, Collaborate, Scale-up” the forum will provide a platform to share knowledge, promote good dialogue between the various regional actors in local governance, sustainable economic development, and the challenges and opportunities for women and youth in the extractive sector.
The WAGES Project is a regional project, implemented in Ghana, Guinea, and Burkina Faso, with an aim to break the vicious cycle in which local communities, especially women and youth, are excluded from the benefits of mining investments.
Throughout its six years of implementation, the project focused on three pillars of intervention in extractive communities – local economic development, knowledge sharing, and local governance.
The WAGES project utilized a community-based approach, in which it partnered directly with local governments across the three countries, to support community needs.
In an attempt to keep community members at a forefront, the project supported developing toolkits for local governments and enterprises, establishing women’s and youth support groups, to help advocate for their economic and social rights.