The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the world in a way that has never been seen before in decades, with economic activities all around the world now at a standstill.
This has resulted in an economic hurricane, with major companies across the world, either discontinuing production or going into bankruptcy.
While all the discussions have been focused on the big companies that have been affected with the attendant loss of jobs, little or no attention has been paid to the youth who are just beginning their careers as national service persons.
National service persons who were just beginning their careers had seen their hopes, dreams and expectations dashed because of the fewer career opportunities.
It is for this reason why the Springboard, Your Virtual University, a radio programme on Joy Fm, used last Sunday’s edition to discuss how COVID-19 has impacted the 105,000 national service persons across the country and how talent can be their career launch pad.
Helping with the discussing was a national service person with the Ghana Education Service Office at Dodowa, Ms Felicia Naa Kordie Odonkor.
Despite having a degree in education from the University of Cape Coast, Ms Felicia also cooks, bakes and makes fresh juices for sale.
Commenting on how she wears many hats, she said, “I love using my talent and I find it very easy. I have lots of friends who ask why I didn’t do anything regarding cooking in school and rather studied education.”
Earning from her talent
When asked whether she was earning from her talents, she said, “yes, I am earning some income even if not on a large scale, but I am really doing well with what I have because people really do recommend me a lot and I love that because there are other people who have started and not even getting that.”
She said she was currently earning money from her cooking, baking, selling fresh juices and clothes.
Sharing her thoughts on the COVID-19 Recovery and Resilience Programme which was recently launched by the Springboard Road Show Foundation and other partners, she said the programme would help young ones to explore their talents and get ready for the job market.
She said the programme was timely, stating that “I have listened to some episodes already talking about talents and cooking was the first thing that came to mind as my talent.”
Joining in the conversation, another national service personnel, Mr Samuel Opoku, said aside the work he does for his service, he was also into music, arts, graphic design and photography.
“I see my talent as something that God has given me and it is contributing immensely to my life because there are so many ideas that I want to bring into existence.
“This work that I am doing is the source of funding that I am trying to use to support the other ideas that God has given me. I am into music, arts, graphic design and photography but now I am trying to integrate the photography and graphic design to market the arts side of me in other to fund the music,” he explained.
First episode of CoRe presentation
Playing back the first presentation of the CoRe programme, Rev. Albert Ocran, said the programme was designed to equip the youth who formed the core of the Ghanaian society in areas such as health and wellness, job readiness, and business skills to thrive first now and the post COVID-19.
He explained, “talent is a God-given or natural ability, something you do naturally; relatively easily or something you just enjoy doing.
Giving a few examples of notable talented people in the country, he mentioned footballers such as Dede Ayew and Thomas Partey, singers such as Joe Mettle, Diana Hamilton and Becca, radio show hosts such as Doreen Andoh and Kwame Sefa-Kayi.
He said examples of talents included cooking, running, reading, writing, making friends, arranging flowers, organising events, photography, fundraising and telling jokes.
He urged young people to always think about what they could do with their talents to make money.
“If you are at home locked down or maintaining social distancing, reading and writing could be very helpful partly for engaging you and making you occupied and also developing that skills to ultimately provide solutions for other people.
“The picture is beginning to emerge that anything you can do can be put to some use,” he stated.
Talent as the lifeline
Rev. Ocran pointed out that the past few months had been the most disruptive period in the history of the world since the Second World War.
He said the world had been shaken in a way that had never been seen before in recent generations.
“Some have lost their jobs, others are earning far less than they were earning before and asking themselves how do I make it? How do I look after my family? How do I earn a living in this very disruptive world?
“If you have lost your job, your talent can be a lifeline for you, if you are home keeping social distance, finding your talent can help you occupy yourself and make your life more fulfilling and more meaningful.
“If your income has been cut, your talent could be helpful as a potential source of additional income,” he explained.
Source: Daily Graphic
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