BACK­PACK Group trains 135 youths on vocational trades in Abuja

Foundation of­fers 10,000 stu­dents over­seas schol­ar­ship

Daily Trust - - BACKPACK -

The Em­pow­er­ment De­vel­op­ment and Self Re­liance For Nige­rian Youths Ini­tia­tive (EDSNYI) group, last week grad­u­ated about 135 youths it trained in var­i­ous vocational trades to sup­port them­selves and fam­i­lies eco­nom­i­cally.

Co­or­di­na­tor of the group Tunde Ige said the ini­tia­tive was born out of the fact that most youths are Idle which in turn makes them restive and as such con­tribut­ing the vices in the so­ci­ety.

Ige who said the or­ga­ni­za­tion was con­cep­tu­al­ized in 2014 added that it was aimed at see­ing a so­ci­ety where youths, women as well as the vul­ner­a­ble in the so­ci­ety are sup­ported through so­cial en­ter­prise that can en­sure they take care of their fam­i­lies both in health and eco­nomic wise.

“We just make them pay a fee of N1000 for the form and mem­ber­ship card but train­ing is free. We train them on vocational trades that are vi­able within the so­ci­ety. We don’t want to train th­ese youths on so­phis­ti­cated and jumbo trades like pi­lots.

“We taught them trades that are prac­ti­cal and would be ef­fec­tive within the so­ci­ety like teach­ing, tai­lor­ing, graphic/web de­sign, bak­ing, house wiring, and gen­er­a­tor re­pairs, one that would gen­er­ate in­stant rev­enue for them and their fam­i­lies and also im­pact their com­mu­ni­ties,” Ige said.

The group which noted that an­other 250 have reg­is­tered de­cried in­ad­e­quate train­ing resources said, “be­cause we do not ex­pect a young grad­u­ate to have the money to learn th­ese trades we do not re­quest fees from them, as such it is very task­ing get­ting resources to train them.”

With the suc­cess of the pi­lot scheme in Lugbe, the group said it will repli­cate it in Karu, Kubwa, Gwag­wal­ada and other sub­urbs of the FCT where in­di­vid­u­als have shown in­ter­est. Text by Ade­mola Adebayo ver 10,000 Nige­rian stu­dents are to be of­fered tu­ition waivers to un­der­take stud­ies in Cyprus, Malaysia, In­dia and Rus­sia, by the Mike Omo­to­sho Foundation In­ter­na­tional Schol­ar­ship (MOFIS).

An­nounc­ing the pro­gram on Satur­day in Abuja, Dr. Mike Omo­to­sho, Founder, Mike Omo­to­sho Foundation said the pro­gram aims to bridge the gap be­tween the­ory and prac­tice in in­sti­tu­tions by pro­vid­ing ac­cess for Nige­rian stu­dents to gain qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion abroad and bring the knowl­edge, ex­per­tise and qual­ity back to Nige­ria.

Ac­cord­ing to Dr. Omo­to­sho, the pri­or­ity of ed­u­ca­tion which was to de­velop skills lead­ing to em­ploy­ment and self-sus­tain­abil­ity hasn’t been prop­erly har­nessed as those who gain ac­cess to in­sti­tu­tions of higher learn­ing have not

Obeen able to ac­quire the skills de­sired by em­ploy­ers. “We have over 1.5 mil­lion can­di­dates ap­ply an­nu­ally for ad­mis­sions into uni­ver­si­ties na­tion­wide but only about 600,000 are ad­mit­ted. Some of th­ese un­suc­cess­ful ap­pli­cants be­come frus­trated and some­times, re­sort to crimes; hence the need for mean­ing­ful ac­cess to univer­sity.

“The foundation is com­mit­ted with her part­ners to walk our Youth through the right path, be­cause we be­lieve that ac­cess to qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion is the life­line for a bright to­mor­row,” he said.

The scheme is open to Nige­ri­ans who have at least 5 cred­its in their O Level Ex­am­i­na­tion, seek­ing to study for their Un­der­grad­u­ate or Master’s de­gree. Can­di­dates will be se­lected on the ba­sis of merit from the test which would be con­ducted be­fore col­lec­tion of doc­u­ments, the foundation said.

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