Traditionally, the situation in Bolgatanga was as follows:
The furniture makers companies usually consist of an owner, sometimes with a paid employee and often supplemented by 2 to 8 unpaid young people. The young people stayed for an average of three years and during that time they performed unpaid work.
Then they left and started their own business, because their bosses couldn’t pay them.
This resulted in more and more companies and a lot of competition. It became increasingly difficult for the furniture makers to earn money. In order to tackle this problem, a number of small companies, under the guidance of Henk Groot (ex-treasurer of Holland Bolga Support), have joined forces and have started a partnership – Lifestyle Artisans – to stand stronger as a group.
In 2017, Lifestyle Artisans was the first project to set up a school together with Holland Bolga Support to provide education to woodworkers and carpenters students. There, young people with a minimal previous education can develop into craftsmen or men.
The collaboration was an example for other crafts and since 2017, other crafts have joined in addition to the carpenters: sewing and clothing factories, jewelry makers and bead designers, basket and shoe makers, weaving mills, upholsterers and hairdressers.
In addition to their specific vocational training and practical skills, these aspiring craftsmen are educated in business economics, accounting, marketing and organizational studies.
The center trains the young people to pass an official state exam for secondary education in one of the above professions in three years.
The school does not receive any government support.