The unemployment rate in the country seems to be influencing some of the youth to take up jobs they never thought would be how they would earn an income.
For some graduates, they land a job immediately after their national service but for others, exploring as many odd jobs as they can is the only way they can survive.
Felika Mahama has tried her hands at different occupations to earn some money for herself. She studied Business Development Studies at the University of Development Studies (UDS).
She first started work as a clerk for a company. However, due to their low salary and lack of job satisfaction, Felika quit.
Desperate times they say call for desperate measures, so Felika turned to modelling. But, again poor remuneration forced her to consider other options.
From there, the young graduate took every opportunity that came her way despite the meagre salaries.
“I worked with about four companies, one was an IT company, a shipping company and a start-up. I joined the forestry commission’s Youth in Afforestation. I was with them for about three years,” she told Joy Prime’s Emmanuel Dzivenu.
Felika stated that she left the ‘Youth in Afforestation’ program in 2021 after many frustrations, it was then she decided to be her own boss.
But to start a business the young graduate needed an idea for a service and Covid-19 came to her rescue.
“When Covid came I saw that everything was based on delivery services so I thought to myself that ‘a lot of people are too tired or busy to go to the washing bays, so what don’t I take my services to them?’.”
Park and Bright, the mobile car washing service was then born. Felika was determined to tailor her services to meet the needs of the working class who may not have the time to visit washing bays.
“So I informed my dad because this car was already parked (in their home). He agreed, got me the pressure washer and poly tank and that was how we started,” she said.
Though her father had given his support, mixed reactions greeted Felika’s decision to venture into a car washing business.
Some people, she said, were not “nice” when she made the decision. But thankfully, the graduate said there are many others who have welcomed her decision and even prayed for her business.
Felika recruited her cousin Sidiq to drive her around town while she responds to customers’ requests.
She provides a host of maintenance services, from dashboard and console brightening, carpet washing, upholstery cleaning to steering wheel disinfection just to mention but a few.
“My charges range from GHS30 to GHS100 depending on your distance, size of car and how dirty the car is,” she said.
One customer told JoyPrime that he has been using the services of Park and Bright for about three months and he does not regret it.
“I have lost my appetite for going to the washing bay. While sorting things out in my office, my car is also being sorted. The quality of service is A1,” he said.
Business so far is looking good for Park and Bright. Felika noted that she renders services within the catchment area of East Legon. However, she has been receiving calls from people outside East Legon.
On average, Felika Mahama is able to wash six cars in a day. But with the constant car breakdown and hikes in fuel price, she fears the economy may soon constrict her out of business.
Despite those fears, the young graduate is fixated on her goal and hopes to take her business further.