EDC Partners Mastercard Foundation on Youth Empowerment

Chinedu Eze
The Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) has announced a partnership with the Mastercard Foundation to launch the Transforming Nigerian Youths program. The EDC said it recognised that employment was a pathway out of poverty and so was seeking to use the programme to create a network of entrepreneurial and managerial change makers, particularly young people and women across the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) sector in Nigeria.

The EDC said the free training program aims to boost employment creation and sustainable livelihoods.
“This program is open to all and is primarily focused on Lagos, Kano, and Kaduna states. Through this program, 40,000 young people will be supported with the resources and learning required to start, grow, and expand their businesses.

“The program will also provide support and resources to young people who want to become employable in the creative and agricultural sectors. In the last decade, Nigeria’s unemployment rate has continued to increase,” EDC said.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the unemployment rate as at the second quarter of 2020 was 27.1 percent, indicating that about 21.7 million Nigerians remain unemployed, of which 13.9 million are young people.

The EDC is an establishment of Pan-Atlantic University, which is a leading enterprise development Centre and has in the last 17 years provided support services to thousands of SMEs through capacity building, advisory services, and partnerships with organisations that have an interest in the development of the SME sector in Nigeria.

“We are excited to be part of the Transforming Nigerian Youths program to empower young Nigerians, especially women. It will serve as a catalyst for entrepreneurial reorientation, job creation, and sustainable livelihood,” the Deputy Director, Enterprise Development Centre, Pan-Atlantic University, Mr. Peter Bankole.
Bankole explained that the intervention would scale EDC’s online learning capabilities to provide core business training to an even broader grouping of SMEs in the agricultural and creative sectors of the economy. It will also ensure that even the most marginalized, including young women in the north, can access this world-class training.
“Young Africa Works in Nigeria is committed to enabling opportunity for at least eight million young Nigerians. Entrepreneurship will play a key role in achieving this goal. Fortunately, Nigeria also has no shortage of young entrepreneurs.

“This initiative, which is part of the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy will prepare and enable young people to pursue theiraspirations and create productive livelihoods for themselves and others,” said Country Head, Nigeria at the Mastercard Foundation, Chidinma Lawanson.

Applications are open for young Nigerians, especially women within the age range of 18-35.
The Mastercard Foundation works with visionary organizations to enable young people in Africa and in indigenous communities in Canada to access dignified and fulfilling work. It is one of the largest, private foundations in the world with a mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion to create an inclusive and equitable world.

Aviation Sector to Lose 4.8 Million Jobs in 2020, Says IATA
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said about 4.8 million people would lose their jobs by the end of 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The global body said despite the current crisis facing the global aviation industry, its commitment to pursuing sustainability remains strong, particularly as the sector starts to recover.
Speaking at the Global Sustainable Aviation Forum, industry leaders reiterated that long-term climate action should be a priority alongside economic recovery in the coming years.

Executive Director of the cross-industry Air Transport Action Group, Michael Gill said: “Air transport is in the midst of the deepest shock in its history. We expect a reduction of up to 4.8 million jobs in the sector by the end of the year and a massive hit to our ability to connect the world. However, as we plan for the recovery of air connectivity, we also must prioritise our environmental progress.

“Our sector has a long-term climate change goal to cut CO2 emissions in half by 2050. With the right help from governments, the energy sector and technologists, we expect that global aviation will be able to hit net zero emissions a decade or so later.

“Some parts of the world will be able to meet this point earlier and a number of individual companies have already set goals along these lines. To achieve this will require a transition in our energy source from fossil fuel to sustainable aviation fuel, the acceleration of research and development of electric, hybrid and potentially hydrogen aircraft.
“It will also require a commitment to collaboration going even beyond our current levels. We have the next decade to set the scene for sustainable global connectivity for the next 30-40 years.”

Speaking about the need to focus on sustainability as part of the industry’s long-term recovery from Covid-19, the Director General of Airports Council International, Luis Felipe de Oliveira, said: “The recovery of the aviation industry will be a key driver of the global economic recovery.

“To ensure that aviation can continue to provide the economic and social benefits, it is crucial that we pursue a green recovery and lay the foundation for a prosperous and sustainable industry for the long term. “Airports are central to the interconnected and interdependent aviation ecosystem. Airports and their partners in the aviation industry need the support of appropriate regulation and government policies to facilitate a green recovery and push for real change.”

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