How Mainstream Foundation leads more youths on business pathway | Dailytrust

How Mainstream Foundation leads more youths on business pathway

How Mainstream Foundation leads more youths on business pathway
How Mainstream Foundation leads more youths on business pathway

With the rising unemployment in Nigeria, there is the need for more efforts towards pulling more youths into entrepreneurship.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the unemployment rate so far is at 33 percent which means that 33 out of every 100 Nigerians who are able to work have none. At 213.117 million current population figures, about 70m Nigerians are unemployed.

Among the organisations and individuals helping to pull young ones to the business pathway is the Mainstream Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of Mainstream Energy Solutions Limited (MESL), operators of the Kainji and Jebba hydropower plants in Niger State.

Its latest gesture is the training and the enablement of 70 youths drawn from its operational area. Some of the beneficiaries spoke during the graduation and empowerment ceremony held at the Emir of Borgu Palace in Borgu town in the State. Abubakar Adamu who was trained by the Foundation in welding at the Skills Upgrading and Vocational Training Centre, Kaduna, was elated saying it was skill he knew would change his fortune.

Aisha Yahaya was trained in catering services and she has this to say: “We are grateful to the Foundation for this gesture and I am ready to start my business with the starter pack; I have already gotten a place for it.”

And for Abdullahi Yunusa who learnt fish and chicken breeding (poultry), learning a trade is something he yearned for. “A lot of us yearned for this after secondary school and I am lucky to have gotten it. We pray for others to also get this opportunity too. So, what I pray for, is that the business will yield results so that we can train others.”

Husaini Yusuf from Yauri in Kebbi state said he was among those the Foundation trained on poultry at the Federal College of Education, Kontagora. “Poultry is lucrative if you have the knowledge because, for instance, eggs are what people consume every day. I am grateful for the seed money; it will help me along the way.”

Wife of the Niger State governor, Dr Amina Abubakar Sani Bello, had some words for the new entrepreneurs. “You have been given the best of opportunity, please make use of it. And once you start your business, remember where you came from and give back.”

Earlier, Chairman of the MESL Board of Directors, Col. Sani Bello (Rtd) had told the dignitaries including Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar that the foundation had delivered 454 projects at N832.4m in the host communities since 2016.

The Executive Director of the Foundation, Siraj Abdullahi, said the 70 youths were trained in trade including catering, decoration, poultry and fish farming among others, while the Foundation will monitor them till the businesses grow.

Chairperson of the Foundation, Alhaji Umaru Bako, had also tasked the beneficiaries on passionate operations of their business so they can stand out. 

On his part, the Emir of Borgu, HRH Muhammad Haliru Dantoro assured the foundation of more support. “We shall make sure that whatever is needed to do this we shall continue to give you the support.”

He also said the Emirate will monitor the empowered youths so that in one year, there will be an evaluation of what the entrepreneurs have done with the empowerment.

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