Dr Chidi Okpaluba and MD of Tropical Gate Ltd, Apostle Mbaigbo Nnamdi at a media briefing in Lagos.
A non-governmental organization, the Centre for African Renaissance, Reformation and Development (CEFARRD), says it will equip 10 million Africans with skills and knowledge that will make them relevant in the 21st century knowledge economy.
The theme of its project is, “Every youth a skill project Africa.”
In a statement in Lagos on Friday, the President and Founder of CEFARRD, Dr. Chidi Okpaluba, says he believes there are no useless or worthless beings. “All we have are men and women who have no skills or training that will give them decent jobs and good quality life.”
“So every youth a skill project Africa is aimed at training 10 million youths in the next 10 years on skills and knowledge that will make them relevant in the 21 century and move them out of poverty.
“This is not the same with the much touted skills training all over the country. This is a total man approach to skills training which starts from mind transformation, inner man change and then skills impartation.
“By 2050, more than 50 per cent of young people on earth will be staying in Africa. Africa has a population that is 65 per cent youths. So ‘Every Youth a Skill’ is a concept we developed to massively train youths in various life skills from auto mechanic to building technology to carpentry, to roofing technology, to plumbing, to electrical works, to massage therapy, to manicure and pedicure.
“There are over 350 life skills that these youths can be trained on and they will become instantly useful to the society. They become instantly employable or they can even start a business of their own.
“So, ‘Every Youth a Skill’ is a solution we developed which can train massively up to one million people at a time within six months. Now, we have combined three things in this training. We combined this key training, and we also brought in the mind transformation programme, and then we brought in the apprenticeship programme.
“We have done two to three very successful pilots and they are working perfectly. We just concluded another pilot in Anambra State where we trained a hundred and three youths in about seven skill sets: manicure, pedicure, make-up and facials, massage therapy, 3D flooring, confectioneries and cosmetology and photography. Each of these guys has started doing something in that direction. The massage therapists have started making money. In fact, they started making money the first day they left the camp because we didn’t just teach them the skill, we also showed them where the opportunities are in the industry where they work. Imagine a youth that has no job before and suddenly the youth starts making N20, 000 to N30, 000 a day from her own creative work. You can be sure that will reduce prostitution, you can be sure that will reduce so many ills of the society.
Youths Learning some skills in Anambra State
“So, if you know your younger brothers, cousins, relatives that are not working, instead of dashing them money, instead of all these money politicians dash them…there are so many politicians that have huge money allocated to them as constituency projects, use it and sponsor these young people and you will be sure you will begin to eliminate all these small, small fraud around the system.
“In Anambra State, the government equipped them with start-up materials. So, we didn’t just train them, we gave them start-up kits…there is a young lady that does manicure for my wife and I. I interviewed her and she told me that in her worst day, she makes N15, 000. She said the minimum number of bookings she gets in a day is five