By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna
Following the increasing unemployment rate in Nigeria, a University Don, has proposed a model that may end unemployment in the country if government at all levels will be committed to promoting it and citizens accept and adopt the strategy.
The model, ‘Volunteerism’ entrepreneur, according to the Professor, is expected to produce en-masse volunteers who will turn their backs on idleness and unemployment and get engaged in social service VOLUNTEERING that will be of immense benefit to their communities.
“The concomitant effect of this programme shall be reduction in unemployment; up-skilling of labour force and improvement of their employability. These shall result in a safe and secure society.” He added.
Initiator of the model, Professor Seth Akutson, Director, Entrepreneurship Research & Development Centre of the Kaduna State University, disclosed this during a chat with some Online Journalists, in his office at the weekend, in preparation to the “1st Kaduna Entrepreneurship Volunteerism Service (KADEVS)”, bid to hold on Tuesday 13th March 2018.
The theme of the programme is “Turning Kaduna State Women and Youth into Entrepreneurs Through Volunteerism & Craftsmanship”.
“The challenge of unemployment bedeviling our society is not without solution. KADEV is one of the solutions proffered to raise an army of street-wise entrepreneurs’ who will be adequately trained to go and do likewise in their various local governments and embark on noble community projects.” He stated.
The Professor noted that, “the rate of unemployment in Kaduna State and in Nigeria at large is exponentially at an alarming rate. The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) according to its report of Monday June 5th 2017 revealed that 58.1% of youths within the ages of 15-34are currently unemployed. Most of these youths lack the required skills to enable them for assimilation into the labour market.
“Several efforts in recent past to deal with this societal menace have attempted providing solution to this problem through various approaches. These include launching youth employment scheme, training through various apprenticeship, programs, establishment of employment directorates etc. The choked nature of human resources in various organizations both private and public may no longer accommodate such approaches.
“We in Entrepreneurship Research & Development Centre of Kaduna State believe that volunteerism, an aspect of social entrepreneurship is at the moment a noble solution to our growing unemployment challenge.”
He explained that in response to the daring danger facing Kaduna State and the country at large; and in fulfillment of its role and mandate in the state, the Entrepreneurship Research & Development (ERDC), Kaduna State University; in conjunction with the Kaduna State Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) obtained approval from His Excellency, the Governor of State, Malam Nasir Ahmed El-Rufa’i to run the first ever Kaduna Entrepreneurs Volunteerism Service scheme.
The Don, said, the centre seeks to churn out an army of volunteers into the 23 local government areas of the state, through the initiative.
According to him, “Kaduna Entrepreneurship Conclave (KADEC) is the first step meant to achieve this objective of producing volunteers across the state. The vision of KADEV is: Every youth, a volunteer in Kaduna State. The mission is: to turn all Kaduna State youth to volunteers that will serve their communities for the good of all. NO COST, NO CAPITAL REQUIRED for being Street-Wise Entrepreneurs.
“KADEV is a unique initiative that affords the Kaduna youth at no cost No money for start-up, no personnel, no tools, nothing but just the volunteer.
“The Conclave is a sort of boot-camp that participants are coming out with identified areas of volunteer service they can render to their local governments. This training program is training 10 selected individuals (youths and women) who are expected to go back to their various local governments and train another 10 selected individuals on a continuous basis. ERDC KASU shall serve as the coordinating center to undertake monitoring and valuation; provide necessary assistance in terms of linkages measurement of impact in the state.”
The Professor, enumerated the benefits of the programme to participants as follows; “self-worth and fulfillment; community recognition; potential for gainful employment; development of innate abilities; vanishes idleness and joblessness; sense of belonging to a cause; unseen hand reward; Keeps one fully engaged and occupied; opportunity to develop a career or vocation; societal respect and honour; and visible evidence of contributions to societal value.
Others are, “being responsible and respectable; Provides life’s future direction; Opportunity for others support, experience to savour, connection with mentors and angel investors, enhanced CV and Profile, etc.”