It was indeed a joyous moment for some youths, men, women and the unemployed recently in Bida and Borgu, Niger State…

Tony Udemba

It was indeed a joyous moment for some youths, men, women and the unemployed recently in Bida and Borgu, Niger State, as hundreds of them benefited from free skills acquisition programmes courtesy of the Helping Hands International (H2i).

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Participants were trained on various skills, including fashion designing, catering, leather application (shoes, bags, belts, etc), computer programming, paint making, soap making, production of disinfectants, bead making and commercial ventures.

The Etsu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, said the programme would go a long way in harnessing the talents of the rural people. He told the participants to make good use of whatever they learnt, saying that the opportunities offered were enormous and capable of changing their lives for better.

He noted the danger in increasing the number of unemployed in the country: “Good programmes that would offer free skills acquisition and empowerment to the unemployed and rural people must be supported by government and corporate organisations.”Chief Executive Officer, H2i, Amb. Obitex Ngoka, represented by its executive director, Mrs. Ifeoma Ngoka, said: “We are grateful to His Royal Highness for all his support and cooperation in making our team to be here to offer this free skills acquisition trainings and empowerment programme to hundreds of youths, men and women in this emirate.

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Since the inception of the organization in Nigeria, over 10,000 people had benefited from its programmes.” She enjoined participants to pay attention to the new skills that they would learn and deploy the skills to better their lives and that of their families. Similarly, Emir of Borgu, Alhaji Mohammed Haliru Dantoro, urged them to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the training to learn new skills that would assist them to venture into entrepreneurship.

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He made the remark in Borgu: “It is not everyday that you get opportunities like this, therefore you must be serious and listen carefully to learn all that the trainers would teach you throughout the trainings. I strongly believe that all the new skills that you are going to learn will assist you to start new businesses.”

Ngoka enjoined the participants to make good use of whatever they had learnt and start small businesses, even as she expressed gratitude to the royal father for making it possible for the organization to offer its free programmes. Hajia Ahmed, a resident and participant, commended the organizers for their milk of human kindness and for reaching out to them with the training programme: “Poor people in the country were often neglected, abandoned and left with the burden of catering for their families.“I believe the programme would serve as a succor to our plights.

As a recipient, I am determined to make good use of the new skills learnt for the betterment of members of my family.”

Another beneficiary, Sani Yaro, was full of joy and appreciation for the humanitarian initiatives of the organizers. He also promised to utilise the new skills he had learnt to improve his financial status and take care of his family, even as he called on other organisations and wealthy individuals in the society to come to the assistance of the large army of unemployed persons in the country.

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