The Nation Builders Corps (NABCO) is a government initiative aimed at addressing graduate unemployment in Ghana. The President, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on May 1, 2018 launched the programme. Aside providing temporal employment to graduates, central to the objectives of NABCO is to engage the new talents of unemployed graduates and equip them with skills through a process of value addition and training.
The scheme which is opened to all Ghanaians who have discharged their national service obligations will last for three years. In its first year, the scheme employed about 100,000 graduates under seven modules; namely, Educate Ghana, Heal Ghana, Feed Ghana, Revenue Ghana, Digitize Ghana, Civic Ghana and Enterprise Ghana under a monthly stipend of GH¢700. The focus of the initiative will be solving public service delivery in health, education, agriculture, technology, governance and drive revenue mobilization and collection. Those who are able to secure permanent employment during the training would be allowed to exist the program since it is a pathway to permanent employment.
The NABCO program has the following as its objectives:
• Provide temporary employment to unemployed graduates
• Improve skills and employability for transition from programme to permanent employment
• Improve public service delivery
• Improve on government revenue mobilization
• To provide needed infrastructure to improve access to basic public services
MODULES UNDER THE NATION BUILDERS CORPS SCHEME
The programme aims to train and equip graduates with the necessary work tools and deployed around the country under the seven modules. Below are the modules and what they intend to achieve.
Educate Ghana Module
The main focus of graduates employed under this module will be on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and other relevant subjects at the primary and secondary schools levels across the country. Graduates are expected to make use of the technology component of this module by applying their skills in areas such as: library and archival, non-formal education programmes, digital and mobile libraries programme. The Ministry of Education with its ongoing reforms plans to utilize over 10,000 graduates trainees under this module.
Heal Ghana Module
With the help of the Ghana Health Service and the Ministry of Health, the scheme will deploy trained nurses and health workers under this module to areas within health delivery that require intensive workforce needs. Their work will be to provide healthcare delivery to deprived and rural communities across Ghana. The trainees will particularly focus on sectors such as emergency medicine as well as first aid.
Feed Ghana Module
Agriculture is central to Ghana’s transformation agenda. In an attempt to transform Agriculture, the government through the Ministry of Agriculture has introduced number of policies. These are the policies NABCO plans to take advantage with the aim of increasing productivity. The trained Agricultural extension officers and other allied workers recruited under this programme will provide extensive support to farmers. Trainees are expected to take advantage of E-agriculture to disseminate scientific knowledge to farmers.
The mechanization centres, seed and fertilizer programmes, the District Centres for Agricultural Transformation, District Warehouse and logistical management, are some of the available options for the trainees to work. The Ministry of Food and Agriculture with the complement of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development through their policies like Planting for Food and Jobs, Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD) programme and Rearing for Food Jobs (RFJs) and are the lead enablers of this NABCO enrichment module. In addition to the private agribusiness component, this has shown a potential to absorb over 20,000 trainees.
Revenue Ghana Module
To ensure effective national development, revenue mobilization must align with expenditures. Ghana has always had issues with revenue generation leading to annual budget deficit. To correct this, there is the need to double our efforts in revenue mobilization and collection in the country. This is where the graduates under the Revenue Ghana come in. Tertiary graduates under this programme are to provide a workforce and minimal technology solution to generate the requisite revenue for the development of Ghana. The Ghana Revenue Authority plans to take advantage of this module recruit about 6000 personnel to assist them in revenue mobilization.
Digitize Ghana Module
The use of technology has been one effective way of easing business transactions, improving efficiency, cutting costs, increasing revenue, and productivity. For the formalization agenda of the government to succeed, Ghana has no other choice than to use and apply technology in addressing its challenges. This module offers an opportunity for graduates to help government achieve its agenda of formalising the economy, using technology.
The graduates under this module will help government deliver on a number of digitization policies such as National Identification scheme, Digital Addressing System for every location in Ghana, Land Title and Land Administration (the Land Administration Project for example), Health and Safety monitoring solutions in our industrialization drive (e.g. mines, factories, oil and gas), standardize Ghana (Ghana Standards Authority), Archival and digitization at Registrar-Generals Department, Birth and Death Registry, Passport Application Centres, as well as research, monitoring and evaluation hubs within Development Authorities to assist in recording and tracking progress of both the user sectors and projects, as well as the progress of NABCO personnel.
Civic Ghana Module
The main objective of this module is to bring governance to the people in the most simplified and collaborative way. The Civic Ghana is designed to provide some resource base at the District and Constituency level. Through this governance scheme, graduates shall be trained to assist within the constituency and district level, programmes that come under the purview of the development authority and the local authority.
Enterprise Ghana Module
The Enterprise Ghana Module is designed to assist with the industrialization agenda of the government. Government initiatives such as One District One Factory which has an objective of establishing a factory in each district with the help of the private sector and stimulate existing industries is where graduates recruited under this module would be needed much. Under both initiatives, opportunities exist for the recruitment of graduates, by the private sector into both the existing factories and the new factories being built. It also offers the trainees an opportunity to be trained on how to establish your own business.
PARTNERS OF NABCO
The Nation Builders Corps is in partnership with both state and private institutions. The institutions provide training platforms for the trainees which enhance their capacities. Based on agreements, some of these institutions use staff their institutions from NABCO. Below are some of the partners of NABCO and the role they play:
National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP)
1. Entrepreneurship development through training and connection funding(Main Function)
2. Provision of Entrepreneurship training to those exiting the package
and seeking to become entrepreneurs
3. Connection of entrepreneurs to the funding opportunities
National Board for Small Scale Industry (NBSSI)
1. Development and growth of MSME’s and SME’s in Ghana(Main Function)
2. Provide further training and funding if choosing to becoming entrepreneurs
3. upon exit from the 3 years
Council for Technical, Vocational and Education Training (COTVET)
1. Oversee the training of vocation and technical courses(Main Function)
2. Identify the enterprises and the sectors, and the certain skills required.
3. Type of certificates issued, units of achievement and link them to competencies
3. Share standards
4. Share training needs/gaps in the industries
5. Access to pool of trainers
Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI)
1. Regulatory body for Trade and Industry(Main Function)
2. Provide list of companies registered in Ghana
3. Keep track of placement in industry
Ghana Standards Authority (GSA)
1. Set standards, custodian of weights and measures degree( Main Function),
2. inspection, conformity assessment and certification
3. Set standards, custodian of weights and measures degree,
4. inspection, conformity assessment and certification
ACHIEVEMENTS OF NABCO
Aside serving as a platform to train unemployed graduates, the Nation Builders Corps has been of great benefits to many of the unemployed graduates recruited under the various modules.
For instance, about 11,000 trainees had existed the problem since 2019 for gaining permanent employment or establishing their own businesses. This gives the government the opportunity to recruit and replace the trainees so more unemployed graduates benefit from the scheme.
Again, the program has been a source of income to many of the recruits. Many of the recruits depended of the families and loved ones for assistance. The monthly stipend though not enough serves a great relief to many of the recruits. They now have a monthly stipend they rely on for their sustainance.
More importantly, the scheme does not only train recruits but also offer them the opportunity to be employed. The government has asked Ministries, Department and Agencies to priortize the trainees for permeant employment due to their experience they gave garnered during the training period. This makes them stand out among other potential employees.