The Ghanaian economy has grown more than those of many other African countries in recent years. This is partly due to the country’s liberal trade and privatisation policies and its stable government.

But growth is uneven. In the north, particularly the Upper West, Upper East and Northern Regions, people rely on subsistence farming. Flooding and drought are common and when crops fail people have no alternative source of income. About 80% of the population lives on less than one dollar a day.

Trusted locally based organisations help people get the skills they need to work successfully as blacksmiths, carpenters, seamstresses and more. Tools for Self Reliance works with them to provide the tools and fund the training. The goods and services that result benefit not just their families but also the wider community.


Tools for Self Reliance works with its partners in northern Ghana to get people out of poverty and into work. Our partners are non-governmental organisations with a successful record of working with local communities. Here are a few of them.

Click here to view our Case Studies


NORSAAC was founded in 2002 to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS. Today it works to improve the lives of all marginalised groups in the north. Tools for Self Reliance supports NORSAAC with projects to train youth in bicycle repairs and help them to set up their own businesses.

Read more about the Youth Livelihood Empowerment Project

Visit their website


TRAX Ghana

The rise in youth unemployment and poverty in rural communities in northern Ghana is being addressed by our partner TRAX Ghana. TRAX Ghana works with small-scale farmers to develop and support alternative sources of income generation. Tools for Self Reliance support TRAX Ghana’s apprenticeship programme in and around Bolgatanga in the north of Ghana.

Read the impact report from our project with TRAX developing trade skills for young people has made in Talensi and Nabdam Districts to prevent illegal gold mining.

Visit their website

Street Girls Aid

Street Girls Aid were established in 1994 to work with young women and girls on the street, and their aim is to ensure this group is better protected and has opportunities to improve their situation through support and training. Their staff have built relationships with thousands of women and girls over the years, and work closely with partner organisations to deliver interventions. The experience and knowledge of Street Girls Aid in working directly with vulnerable women and children has been sought by other groups, and they have provided learning, shared models of best practice, and provided training to a range of organisations working with marginalised groups.

Visit their Facebook page

Potential Partners

We are currently not seeking any new partners within our Ghana programme, so will not be accepting any partnership requests for the time being – we will update the website when this changes

In five years, we will have a big workshop that we own and will take on our own trainees.

Isaac Mwesigwa,
Carpentry training, Uganda

Where we work