Obuobia Darko-Opoku, a public speaker and broadcaster, has launched the IGNITE Youth Empowerment Initiative, to engage, empower and embolden young ladies to become better versions of themselves and position them strategically for leadership.
The first edition of IGNITE was held in September as part of the mentorship programme to inspire young ladies with untapped potentials to learn how to communicate persuasively.
A pioneer in applying successful mentorship practices to young girls, Obuobia Darko-Opoku, said: “This initiative is a dream that means a lot to me because it’s a dream coming to fruition. This is what personally makes me a happy girl. That quest, that desire, to develop your talent, pursue your dream and wanting to lead change is a good thing.”
Continuing with the commitment to build the capabilities of young girls in the non-profit sphere, the Obuobia Foundation, has completed a mentorship programme with over 300 young girls at the University of Ghana, Law Faculty in September.
She noted that the initiative mentored about 300 young girls within the ages of 18 and 25.
“I think for the registration and the virtual registration alone is giving us an impression. And an idea on the kind of people who have shown interest in this programme.
“Because what we realised is that the age has been between 18 and 25, and those are our targets. So, we think that we have achieved our target. We believe that we have achieved our target. So, at least we know that we have made that impact,” the business executive said.
She said, “I always ask myself how I can achieve this? Working with likeminded persons to provide an opportunity for our younger sisters to have a learning opportunity that encourages. And also network amongst themselves to get support for their steps towards success and leadership training.”
According to her, “there are many young ladies with untapped potentials who are deferring their dreams and will do with deliberate mentorship and programming. With the right mentorship programmes we can fuel the birth of a new revolution that harnesses the energy and potential of our teeming women for social economic transformation.”
“I’m sure a lot of you are asking what my goal is. It is to build that critical young women who will lead change and champion progress in all sectors of life. IGNITE is here to engage, empower, embolden young people. This is not the usual mentorship programme or you are my role model cliché. IGNITE is and will be different,” Darko-Opoku said.
Speaking at the youth empowerment initiative, the Special aide to former president John Mahama, Joyce Bawah Mogtari encouraged young girls to speak with conviction.
“The only thing lacking is that sometimes we speak without conviction. Communicating is ideal for us. I think one of the greatest things any leader can do is to learn how to be effective and intentional about what they want to sell, and how they want to do it,” she said. “It is important to reject gender straightjackets. In your attempt to be a female leader you will meet a lot of people who will tell you it’s not possible.”
She added: “These are the things that worked for me and I think they will work for you as well in trying to speak with clarity. A lot of time when people are standing in front of you even with a microphone you can’t hear them because they are mumbling.”
“You don’t have to mumble you need to be confident enough to open your mouth for your words to roll off your tongue, in such a way that every word you use is easily spelt by the person listening to you.”
Other speakers at the forum included Dr Ike Tandoh and Nana Aba Anamoah.