The Industrial Training Funds, ITF, has disclosed that about 450, 000 Nigerians have been equipped through its various empowerment programmes.
ITF’s Director General Chief Executive, Sir Joseph Ari (KSM) said the programmes were aimed at reducing unemployment in the State.
He made the disclosure during the graduation ceremony of trainees of the Passion to Profession Programme, P2PP, at the Amuro Community Secondary School in Amuro, Aiyeteju, Mopa-Muro Local Government Area of Kogi State, on Tuesday.
According to Ari, the Passion to Profession Programme (P2PP), is one of the Fund’s special intervention programmes that were conceived under its Reviewed Vision: Strategies For Mandate Actualization, and was unveiled by the incumbent Management of the ITF on assumption of duty to accelerate and fast-track the impartation of technical skills to Nigerians in order to create jobs and reduce unemployment in line with the Federal Government’s policy direction.
The ITF Director General said he was pleased to note that about three years into the implementation of the plan that commenced in late 2016, that over 450,000 Nigerians have been equipped with various skills through the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), the Women Skills Empowerment Programme (WOSEP), the Construction Skills Empowerment Programme (CONSEP), the Agri-Prenuership programme, Skills Training Empowerment Programme for the Physically Challenged (STEPP-C) amongst several others.
He explained unlike the other initiatives that bring trainees to a formal training environment that the Passion to Profession Programme (P2PP) is unique as it uses the Brazilian model where training is taken to the doorstep of the trainees using mobile training units.
“The P2PP, which was first implemented between June 2017 and November 2017 at the Fund’s Model Skills Training Centre (MSTC) in Abuja, trained 140 Nigerians in Tailoring and Garment making, who were given state-of-the-art sewing machines and other supports as start-up packs for them to set up on their own.
“Other runs of the programme took place in Sokoto State, Uyo in Akwa-Ibom State, and Shendam and Pankshin both in Plateau State, where hundreds of youths were equipped with skills in the Art of Pattern Drafting and Sewing Machine Operation and Repairs and Maintenance of Air-conditioning/Refrigeration. I must stress that all the beneficiaries were also empowered with start-up packs in order for them to set up on their own.
“The graduation you are witnessing today is a follow-up to these earlier runs. During the 3-month period that this training lasted, the 30 trainees were thoroughly and intensively equipped with the requisite skills in Pattern Drafting and Garment Making. We believe that the skills that they have acquired will lead to sustainable livelihoods in view of the constant need for people with such skills.
“With the unemployment situation in the country, the number being graduated today may appear infinitesimal; but gradually, through the acquisition of skills for Nigerians, we will whittle the number of Nigerians that are unemployed and in poverty.
“As an indication of our resolve, we have concluded arrangements for the flag-off of our 2019 skills intervention programmes, that will train thousands in over 20 trades and crafts under the following programmes: the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), the Women Skills Empowerment Programme (WOSEP), the Construction Skills Empowerment Programme (CONSEP), the Agri-Prenuership programme, the Skills Training Empowerment Programme for the Physically Challenged (STEPP-C) among others.