United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) is partnering with Federal Government of Nigeria to empower 20 million Nigerian youths by 2030 in a scheme tagged: “Generation Unlimited”.
The scheme is targeted at 20 million young Nigerans between 10 and 24 years out of the nation’s 65 million young people.
UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria, Peter Hawkins, explained that the scheme is being replicated in many other countries with 1.8 billion young people targeted around the World.
The Generation Unlimited programmes were aimed at developing the capacity of young Nigerians to be better positioned as leaders of tomorrow.
“If the youths were not equipped with the right skills set, especially in view of the ongoing digitisation of the world, they would be unable to bring value to the future of Nigeria” Hawkins.
According to Peter Hawkins, “Generation Unlimited is trying to first act as a platform between the government, the United Nations and the International Community and the private sector.
“Out of the 65 million young people, Generation Unlimited is trying to help 20 million of those over the next 10 years to step over the generation that they are in to be able to meet their own ambitions and be valuable commodities in Nigeria.
“What is going to define the future of any country, particularly Nigeria is the digital platform – access to data, access to digital information.
“It is not only expanding the digital platform but expanding young people’s access to that platform.
“There are initiatives like School-2-School connectivity, looking at how we can bring digital learning into the schools, communities and ensure that young people’s skills around digital platforms come to the fore,” he said.
Meanwhile, Hawkins said that UNICEF was particularly focused on the connection between the skills and opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship, trying to develop the skills that jobs require.
“Already, over the past year, we have been engaging with 450,000 young people through different initiatives around the country.
“There is a massive prospect in this country to engage young people. So in summary, Generation Unlimited is trying to help 20 million young people to achieve skills and jobs with the digital platforms being the main conduit for many of these jobs and skills.
“Nigeria’s Vice President is expected to be the one to inaugurate the Generation Unlimited Nigeria, this is a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate a vision for the young people of Nigeria and give them the opportunity to engage in what happens in Nigeria in the future.
“There are many initiatives at the moment currently ongoing, especially around skills development, education live skills learning.
“What we are trying to do at Generation Unlimited is to allow the platform of all of these to go to scale, using different initiatives to trigger off other initiatives to reach the 20 million that we want to reach in the next 10 years,” UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria said.