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‘Youth require entrepreneurial skills to tackle unemployment’

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The need to empower the younger generation with entrepreneurial skills to tackle unemployment in Nigeria has been emphasised.
   
Stakeholders, who gathered in Anambra State recently, urged Nigerian youths to embrace entrepreneurship to create wealth for themselves rather than searching endlessly for non-existing paid jobs.
  
At the programme, about 200 students of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, were empowered on vocational skills and enterprise training relevant for self-reliance.
     
Organised under the Fidelity Bank Youth Empowerment Academy (YEA 6), in partnership with Gazelle Academy, and the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, participants received training in various skill areas including, fashion, makeup, clothe embellishment, coding, and confectionery.
   
At the opening ceremony, wife of the Anambra State Governor and Founder, Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFE), Mrs Ebelechukwu Obiano, urged participants to take the training seriously, stressing that they are being empowered to impact their lives now and in the future.
    
She urged the participants not to sell or mismanage the starter-packs given to them, but to put them to good use and change their lives.
    
She said: “You can make money from what you learnt here even while still in school, and when you graduate. We expect you to be employers of labour rather than searching for paid jobs.”
   
While commending Fidelity Bank and Gazelle Academy for the initiative, and for partnering with her organisation to touch lives, she called on other corporates to emulate the gesture, saying the best investment any organisation can make is to invest in the youths, and the less-privileged in the society.
  
Speaking at the closing ceremony in Awka, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Bank, Nnamdi Okonkwo, said the programme is focused on empowering youths who are the leaders of tomorrow.
  
Represented by Head, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), and Sustainability, Fidelity Bank Plc, Chris Nnakwe, Okonkwo explained that the skills acquisition programme was set up mainly to empower undergraduates in various tertiary institutions with vocational skills and enterprise training needed to become thriving business owners before graduating.
     
Taking the participants through the induction ceremony, the Founder of Gazelle Academy, Muna Onuzo, said: “We are looking for participants who will excel and give us our bragging right. They will join us in future of YEA editions to train others.
  
YEA had previously held at University of Nigeria, Nsukka; Waziri Umar Federal Polytechnic, Birnin-Kebbi; Federal Polytechnic Oko; Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt; and Bayero University, Kano.


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