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US Ambassador commends Nigerian youth


Facilitators of the Understanding the Rights of Women and Girls course by YALI group in Abuja.

Facilitators of the Understanding the Rights of Women and Girls course by YALI group in Abuja.

Urges Young People To Join YALI Network

The United States Ambassador in Nigeria, Stuart Symington, has encouraged Nigerian youth to keep being active in their communities and to keep sharing their successes, no matter the size, to empower and inspire each other through their work.

Recently, the Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI) listed Nigeria as Country of the Week, and Symington used the opportunity to speak to Nigerian youth on their contribution to the country and YALI network in the continent.

“YALI’s success, throughout the continent, but especially in Nigeria, can be attributed to you, the members.  By realising your role as leaders, you’ve improved your community and grown the YALI Network in your country to over 110,000 members (and counting!) – imagine what can happen as that number, and your commitment, grow,” he noted.


The U.S envoy, who had the pleasure of hosting Macon Phillips, Coordinator in the Bureau of International Information Programs, and members of the Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI) community at a reception in his Abuja residence said, “it was an enlightening experience for me to learn about their inspiring projects. Our embassy wants to be a partner with you as we continue our efforts to help strengthen democracy and good governance in Nigeria, encourage opportunity and development, and promote peace and security,” he said.

He noted that, though not all YALI Network members could attend the events, those who he interacted with showcased how they are true representation of all the Nigerian Network members, who are changing their society and presenting a positive story about Nigeria and what can be accomplished here.

“One example of how you, the YALI Network, are contributing to the future of Nigeria is a project by the YALI group in Abuja. They raised funds to provide loans for women running small businesses in rural communities around Abuja through their Women’s Economic Empowerment Program (WEEP).

Meanwhile, network members facilitated sessions on the Understanding the Rights of Women and Girls for prefects and members of local schools in Abuja to promote the #Africa4Her campaign.

“These are excellent examples of ways to use the tools at your fingertips to improve the community – and it all started by making a connection. I encourage you to take note of the inspiring work being done by some of your colleagues. I humbly ask you to follow the lead of the YALI Network communities in Lagos and Abuja, and team up with other network members, who are interested in driving the change you seek,” he urged.

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Stuart SymingtonWEEPYALI
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