The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has disclosed the readiness of its foundation to launch new Youth Empowerment initiatives in order to avail serving and ex-Corps Members of ample opportunities to utilise their talents and harness their potentials in promoting the socioeconomic development of the country.
The Chairman, NYSC Foundation, Francis Erekosima, according to a statement issued by the Corps Director of Press and Public Relations, Adenike Adeyemi, gave the assurance when he led members of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation on a courtesy call to the NYSC Director- General, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim in his office, Tuesday in Abuja.
Erekosima, while updating the Director-General on the programmes of the Foundation said it has empowered more than 130 ex-Corps Members with soft loans, and provision of welfare facilities and other interventions in some Orientation camps.
He said the Foundation is also planning to create a platform for all ex-Corps Members through a unique national convention with the aim of mentorship and support to ex and serving Corps Members and other interventions for the Scheme.
Another upcoming programme according to the Chairman is the “Youth First lnitiative”, aimed at providing a bankable platform for empowering youth on entrepreneurship development.
“We intend to use this project as a major hub in sourcing for funds through grants, donations and project support for the implementation of the Youth First Programme.” He added.
Responding, the NYSC Director- General Brigadier, General Shuaibu Ibrahim appreciated the efforts of the Foundation and renewed his commitment to availing Corps Members of the opportunities to harness their potentials through many empowerment programmes.
He said the Scheme had strengthened its Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme, with robust partnerships with funding agencies like CBN, BOI, Unity Bank, Access Bank among others, to give more grants and training to Youth entrepreneurs.
General Shuaibu further enjoined the Foundation to sustain its advocacy for more support that would boost the finances of the NYSC Trust Fund and provide the necessary support to graduate youth entrepreneurs.
He noted that since Corps Members render services to both the public and private organisations, a lot of funds can be sourced to support them, while also stating that when the National Youth Service Trust Fund comes on Stream, part of the funds realised shall be channelled towards financing the entrepreneurial projects of Corps Members.
Ibrahim said through this initiative, the Scheme shall build a crop of investors that will take many Nigerians off the labour market.
During the visit, the Foundation presented a strategic plan to the Director-General, detailing its areas of intervention.