To address the growing rate of youth unemployment and under-employment in the Niger Delta, the Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND), will be training additional 2,000 young men and women to be sustainably employed in the agricultural and Information and Communication Technology (ICT), and Building Construction sectors.
The Niger Delta has witnessed conflicts and youth restiveness and as such, the region records some of the highest rates of unemployment in the country.
In 2017, PIND, with support from Ford Foundation, initiated the first phase of the Niger Delta Youth Employment Pathways (NDYEP) Project to actively target youth in three states of Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Abia States. Of the target to train 1,000 youth, over 1,400 completed technical and soft skills training. This included youth who had no prior livelihood skills.
PIND is implementing the NDYEP project through a number of implementing partners. In this second phase of the NDYEP project, PIND has provided three categories of small grants to sixteen eligible partner organizations for innovative, demand-led youth training and support for equipping 2, 000 youth trainees with relevant skills for work and job creation in Abia, Akwa Ibom and Rivers States of the Niger Delta. The NDYEP grants award and signing ceremony will take place on October 2, 2019, in Port Harcourt, Rivers. The grantees will implement technical, business and employability skills training that demonstrates the actual potential for job readiness.
The Jumpstarting Youth Aquaculture Enterprise grant is aimed at identifying and supporting interested young entrepreneurs starting aquaculture value-added services and fish production businesses by providing access to and training on best practices and technologies. The Bright Future Grant for the ICT sector is aimed at strengthening the ICT ecosystem and providing youth with training in market-relevant skills that will enable them to obtain jobs in ICT and related sectors. The Building Skills for Construction grant aims to support initiatives for professional development in the housing construction sector, that provide youth with practical technical skills in trades such as masonry, tiling, plumbing, electrical, ceiling and wall finishing, (and related soft skills) that are currently most in demand by construction sector employers.
Many traditional skills acquisition programs fail to deliver sustainable results because they do not pay attention to what happens post-training. NDYEP inbuilt a robust infrastructure for post-training support that assists young entrepreneurs to navigate around the harsh conditions of the business world. The support to trained youth consists of business advisory services, market linkages and access to finance both as investment or working capital for growth and expansion.
PIND Foundation is a Nigerian non-profit organization established in 2010 by Chevron Corporation to promote equitable economic development and peace through partnerships in the Niger Delta.