Following the momentous #EndSARS movement, which took place a year ago, the Alliance of Business and Professional Women (ABPW) has announced the launch of a transformational initiative aimed at supporting Nigerian youths to create a propitious country.
The project, tagged “Youth Connect Initiative,” which is in response to the need for Nigerian youths to be recognized as valuable contributors to economic and social development, particularly those classified as ‘disadvantaged,’ would equip youths from underprivileged communities with skills to provide gainful employment.
The project will commence in Lagos by January 2022 and progress to other states. Participants in the 18-30 years age bracket are expected to fulfill entry criteria, including evidence of belonging to a community-based organization, and provide references from either religious organizations they belong to, past employer, or educational establishment.
In a statement, yesterday, Chairman of the APBW Governance Board, Toyin F. Sanni, said: “The Youth Connect Initiative is a most fitting way to turn a most painful memory into something good for the youths who have for decades been ignored, marginalized, oppressed and economically excluded. So, we are going to be solving a whole lot of problems by providing employability solutions to aid entrepreneurship, provide employment opportunities as well as the opportunities to work with institutional partners. Our ultimate goal is to establish end-to-end job creation, creating a cadre of skilled and engaged youths with a strong sense of civic responsibilities.”
The group of Nigerian women leaders, who in solidarity with the Nigerian youths calls for transparent and good governance, recalled that “on this day, a year ago, after weeks of peaceful protests by the youths, patriotic Nigerians watched in horror as defenseless youths, under the banner of the #EndSARS movement, were allegedly attacked by security forces during a peaceful protest against police brutality, harassment, and extortion in the country.
“To commemorate one year since the peaceful #EndSARS protests, the ABPW project is designed to prepare un(der)employed young men and women from disadvantaged communities for the job market with an emphasis on technology by connecting them to job opportunities whilst inspiring them to undertake their civic responsibilities. The programme will provide employability skills, entrepreneurship, vocational and personal development, among others.”