Several innovations and inventions do not end up being enterprises, leading to killing off creativity, ideas shelved, or prototype products shelved, discarded or stolen by more wealthier and powerful people and organisations. Over the years, several innovations created by the youth, are showcased in exhibitions, some awarded, but are not assisted to become start-ups, developed nor incubated to take off as invention enterprises. Many inventors and makers are thus not inspired, motivated, educated or incubated to develop their products and potential.
There is no systematic innovation and invention inspiration, education and development ecosystem. Start-ups face a stiffer challenge of finance. In view of the fact that the businesses are new, owned usually by youth, and laden with risks, they find it difficult to attract financing from existing financial mechanisms. The lack of Venture capital and angel investing mechanisms is therefore a pity for start-ups since the government has failed to address this in a comprehensive manner; the existing government interventions to start-up financing are piecemeal and inadequate, uncoordinated and scattered in various bureaucracies unknown to those who need it, and fraught with wastage, ineffectiveness and leaving the sector further financially weakened.
DEALING WITH SOME CHALLENGES OF GHANAIAN START-UPS
There is therefore the need to have systematic innovation and invention development through a model such as Start-Up SME Centres (SSC) within a Network of Community-based Youth Enterprise Incubation centres which connect together at Community, District, Regional and National Levels, which can also provide motivation and inspiration to Inventors, Innovators, Young Entrepreneurs and start-ups who can also advocate and engage with both the public sector, private sector, academia, media, Civil Society and Advocacy Platforms and other stakeholders in developing better Inventions and innovations ecosystem to encourage creativity which results in viable enterprises that impact numerous social, economic and environmental needs facing Ghanaian people and communities.
Several Community based Youth Entrepreneurship Incubation centres have been set up cost effectively using the Start-Up SME Centres (SSC) Model, which have been franchised to several community facilities in the private sector are underutilized such as facilities of Business, communication and community centres, CSOs/ NGOs, Churches and Mosques. A franchise is given to private owners of such facilities, who are trained to run and manage the facilities as Youth Enterprise Incubation Centres under these.
It is time to take the bull by the horns and develop the necessary means to create opportunities for our teeming youth who are potential entrepreneurs but are seeking non-existing jobs merely because there are no means and direction for them to realise their aspirations and goals of utilizing their great potential.