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Foundation tackles youth unemployment in Niger Delta


A Niger Delta community in Bayelsa

The Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND) has embarked on Niger Delta Youth Employment Pathways (NDYEP) projects to target agriculture, ICT and construction sectors in its bid to reduce youth unemployment in the region. 

NDYEP Project Manager, Emeka Ile, in a statement in Akure, said the target areas were arrived at after a study identified pathways to youth employment in the region.

Ile noted that the study analysed Abia, Akwa-Ibom and Rivers states as pilot states, seeking innovative ways of addressing the growing rate of youth unemployment and underemployment in the Niger Delta.


He added that PIND, with funding provided for the project by the Ford Foundation, had together with its technical partner, Development Alternatives Incorporated (DAI), carried out the study between September 2017 and February 2018.

The design of the new project and dissemination of findings, NDYEP, began three workshops in Umuahia (Abia State), Uyo (Akwa Ibom State) and will end in Port Harcourt (Rivers State).

“Key findings from the study are being disseminated to stakeholders from government, academia, private sector players in agriculture, construction, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), renewable energy, and hospitality.

“PIND is implementing the NDYEP project in three (3) pilot states; Abia, Akwa Ibom and Rivers states, with the goal to map the ecosystem of skills development, analyze opportunities for employment creation and to develop models of youth job-readiness or workforce development.

“These are to provide young men and women in the Niger Delta the opportunity to either commence business enterprises or secure sustainable jobs through quality training that prepares them with market-relevant skills.

“PIND’s study included a labour market assessment in the pilot states to understand the growth of each industry (ICT, Agriculture, Construction); the impact of each sector’s growth on employment; and how a youth employment program could support and grow the labour force,” he said.

Ile stressed that the workshops will help focus investments in critical economic sectors that support sustainable pathways for youth employment and active economic engagement.

Meanwhile, the NDYEP Project Manager, Ile, added: “Beyond fast-tracking development of the region, youth employment is also critically linked to de-escalation of conflict in the Niger Delta.

“We want to see more young people sustainably employed in the agricultural, construction and ICT sectors because there are so many untapped opportunities in these sectors that can rapidly turn around the narrative of the region.”

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