Yei for Kayayei


"In January of 2019, we, Yasmina, Rebekka, and Martina initiated a service
project called Yei for Kayayei. Kayayei is the term used to describe female
head porters working in urban markets in Southern Ghana.

Girls and women migrate from Ghana's Northern regions in search of economic
opportunity. Once in Accra, Kayayei find themselves without social security and
exposed to harsh living and working conditions including being at risk of assault.

Our project, Yei for Kayayei, translates to "Girls for Kayayei" because we are
girls reaching out to help other girls. Before getting directly involved with the
community, we spent 3 months talking to representatives of UNFPA, Society
for Women and Aids in Africa, and Kayayei Youth Association in order to fully
understand the complex issue.

Our lengthy research processes helped us to narrow our focus to teaching
Kayayei vocational skills in the form of sewing instruction along with the
necessary materials to do so. In order to get funding for these resources,
we applied for the LCS Loyalty Grant and obtained funds from other sources,
which allowed us to purchase 5 sewing machines and the relevant tools.
Furthermore, we collaborated with the Italian Women's Association (IWA)
who funded the sewing instruction itself.

Yei for Kayayei has so far provided 8 women with weekly sewing instruction
since June of this year. The project is currently transitioning into the care of
IWA who possess the necessary means to support the women in translating
their new skills into a sustainable livelihood.

To learn about Yei for Kayayei or get involved, contact CAS Coordinator @ eboateng@lincoln.edu.gh