185 Youths To Benefit From NERDC Training

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Arrangements have been concluded by the Nigerian Educational Research And Development Council [NERDC] , for the training of 185 out- of -school youths in all the states of the federation. Already, six standard incubation centres have been put in place in the six geo- political zones of the country located at Abakaliki in Ebonyi state, Damaturu, Kano , Lagos , Calabar, and Mina, Niger state. Making this known during the just-concluded 4- Day Induction Workshop organized for trainers in the out- of-school youth skill acquisition prograame across the six geo- political zones of the country held in Enugu, the Executive Secretary of NERDC, Professor Godswill Obioma, said the centres have been properly equipped with modern and state-of-the art training equipment and consumables. The training according to him, is residential for one month duration, stressing that, the trainees, upon completion of the programme, would be provided with empowerment tools in their various trade areas with a view to enabling them start their own business . Represented on the occasion by the Head of NERDC, South-East geo – political zone and Deputy Director in charge of research, Dr. Cecilia Ikegbunam, the programme, was designed by government to address the scourge of unemployment situation in the country especially among the youths that are out of school. “This programme is in tandem with the yearnings and aspirations of the Millennium Development Goal [MDG] which is aimed at job creation, poverty and hunger reduction. The philosophy behind the programme is to create a great and dynamic economy that is private sector led, which is one of the pillars of Nigeria National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy”. He, further disclosed that there would also be a follow-up activities involving the state Ministry of Youth, National Youth Council of Nigeria, and the National Directorate of Employment NDE for monitoring, and evaluating the trainees after the programme. According to him, the main thrust of the induction was to acquaint trainers with the philosophy, objectives of the exercise as well as the training modules. Professor Obioma, expressed appreciation to the office of the Special Assistant to President Yar’ Adua on MDG for its financial support and cooperation, pointing out that, it was a clear testimony of government dedication and commitment to the MDG and seven-point agenda. The out-of-school youths skill acquisition programme, he said, was conceptualized by the office of the special assistant to the president on MDG in collaboration with NERDC with a view to addressing the high rate of unemployment among out of school youths in the country . The executive secretary, further stated that some of the objectives of the prgramme was specifically to equip out of school youth with entrepreneurship skills for job creation and poverty reduction, building the skills of youth in setting up small business as well as reducing drastically the incidence of unemployment among the youths. His words: “In achieving these objectives, we hope to alleviate poverty, create employment opportunities and means of livelihood.” Professor Obioma, however, hinted that the first phase of executing the programme was the development of a training module in the six trade areas, thus GSM repairs, screen printing, snacks production, barbing, hair dressing, and entrepreneurship, expressing happiness that they have already successfully accomplished this task. He enumerated the process of the development of the module to include a series of planning, writing, critique and editorial workshop involving various stakeholders such as the experienced teachers, policy makers, technicians and vocational education teachers. Professor Obioma went further to disclose that the training of the youth using the module would commence in November this year.