UNICEF Generation Unlimited Initiative Targets 20 million Nigerians
By Adedapo Adesanya
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has disclosed that 20 million Nigerians across the 36 states of the country and the Federal Capital Territory will benefit from its Generation Unlimited Initiative by 2030.
This was disclosed by the Fund’s Representative in Nigeria, Mr Peter Hawkins.
Mr Hawkins said the initiative, which is powered by UNICEF and the government of Nigeria, would also target girls and persons living with disabilities.
He said that the scheme aims to connect the youth to entrepreneurship and employment opportunities, thereby supporting them to change the world for themselves and their communities.
“Nigeria, being the largest African economy, has one of the largest young populations in the world and youth unemployment at about 37 per cent, representing an extraordinary opportunity for development and growth.
“It is in view of this that Generation Unlimited is embarking on a mission to reach 20 million youths in 10 years, with quality education, skills, training, employment, and entrepreneurship opportunities.
“The initiative will target girls and adolescents from underserved communities, including those living with disabilities in Africa’s largest economy,” he said.
Mr Hawkins explained that the programme had begun on a pilot scale with two states as the first beneficiaries.
He added that six more states would follow across the geo-political zones, after which the initiative would be replicated across other states in Nigeria.
“The initiative is all about the states. So, for the digital platform, the two states that we focus on at the moment are Lagos and Kano, then we will expand to six states in each of the geo-political zones.
“Then other states like Edo which is fertile for Generation Unlimited objectives.
“This can allow us to bring in the platforms and the architecture of Generation Unlimited for young people to go through over the next 10 years of a process of educational skills development and entrepreneurship.
“All 36 states would be involved in the initiative. This is not just for the federal level but we are trying to get to the people at the local level.
“So that we can engage young people in the communities, local government areas, capitals and in the states to know the importance of Generation Unlimited,” he said.