As part of efforts to create and preserve wealth and curb unemployment among youths, Heritage Bank Plc in partnership with the Centre for Values in Leadership (CVL) has graduated 100 young entrepreneurs in the CVL Young Entrepreneurship Training Programme (YETP) that took place at Ajegunle, Lagos.
The CVL is aimed at identifying young people, especially youths in densely populated communities and putting them through a full year of training in small business management.
These young entrepreneurs who have been trained in various skills such as catering, bead making, event management, fashion design, arts, hair dressing, shoe cobbling among others have also imbibed comprehensive business management and entrepreneurship skills that would equip them to be successful business owners.
Speaking at the event, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Heritage Bank, Mr. Ifie Sekibo, expressed appreciation to the founder of CVL, Prof. Pat Utomi, for the initiative and implored the graduands to reciprocate by making the best of the opportunity.
A statement from the bank quoted Sekibo to have said: “We are attracted to CVL because we seek how we can harness entrepreneurial skills of people, reduce unemployment and foster development of communities, like the Ajegunle community. We are delighted with the mechanics of this program and we recognise the strategic importance and impact of successful businesses could have on young entrepreneurs and the society, which is why we provide funds for start-ups.”
As a way of showing Heritage Bank’s commitment to the initiative, the bank’s boss, who was represented by the Divisional Head, Corporate Banking, Heritage Bank, Apapa Region, Mr. Kehinde Olugbemi said that two physical agent banking kiosks would be opened and commissioned before the end of the year so as to make financial services more accessible to the graduands as well as the city of Ajegunle.
Also, the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, who was represented by a Director in the State Ministry of Employment, Mrs. Olabisi Boko urged the participants to use the acquired skills immensely to add value to their wellbeing.
Ambode added: “The Lagos state government is committed to fighting unemployment by collaborating with private sector initiatives such as the CVL’s in achieving this goal.” The governor also called on the private sector and other stakeholders in the economy to emulate as well as support the CVL initiative.
Commenting on the initiative, Ahmed Temitayo, an Arts graduate of Ekiti State University, who is also one of the beneficiaries, expressed his satisfaction with the program.
“I have learnt how to boost my career in a more business oriented way and I intend taking my game to the next level.” Temitayo, who already owns an arts studio plans to showcase his works in arts exhibition to promote his business as the YETP programme has broadened his business horizon.
A catering graduate of the programme, Oyedele Oluwakemi, said she sees the YETP Programme as a platform for business networking.“