Over 500 youths across Nigeria have received free Cisco IT Essentials training in different specialisations of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) under the `Digital Jobs for Africa Scheme.
This is an initiative of Aisha Abubakar Audu Foundation, (A3 Foundation), an NGO in Nigeria supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, a U.S based organisation.
The founder of the A3 Foundation, Amb. Aisha Audu-Emeje, speaking at the graduation ceremony of the, `Digital Jobs for Africa Scheme, in Abuja, disclosed that the foundation was working in collaboration with development partners and other organisations to secure employment for most of the beneficiaries of the scheme.
“I am pleased to inform you that we have currently trained 519 youths in the first stage and with the help of our numerous partnership, secured jobs for the most of them,” Amb. Audu-Emeje disclosed
“The most recent of these jobs can be seen in our partnership with VICO, an online ticketing agency, where youths have been empowered to generate income with little or no supervision,’’ she said.
She added that the foundation was in touch with other online platforms to increase the trainees’ chances of being self employed or gaining employment in reputable organisations within and outside Nigeria.
Amb. Audu-Emeje said the foundation was still continuing with the scheme with 200 trainees undergoing training in Kogi state and another 200 scheduled to be trained in Kaduna and Benue states.
She added that the foundation was in talks with Bauchi, Niger and Nasarawa state governments to facilitate the speedy absorption of some the beneficiaries into their various government employment schemes across the country.
She said the foundation was also working in partnership with the Federal Government to facilitate the digital training of the 500,000 teachers to be employed by the Federal Government.
Dr. Audu-Emeje said the foundation was fully in support of the Buhari administration’s youth employment initiative, stressing that more youths would be trained in the ICT sector.
“So far the foundation has made great impact in the ICT world which we know has become the driving force of the country especially now that the country is seeking new ways to diversify its revenue generation.”
Two of the beneficiaries, Miss Nankling Sule and Mr Bassey Bassey told Voice of Nigeria in separate interviews that the skills acquired through the training would impact positively on their income generation capabilities.
Miss Nankling Sule said she had been exposed to the use of computers, and that the training had broadened her knowledge and application of ICT.
She said the programme had enabled her to improve her computer networking skills and ability to solve complex problems using ICT.
Another beneficiary, Mr Bassey Bassey said the training had enhanced his knowledge and application of the computer.
The beneficiary said he could repair computers, noting that he would devote his skill to training of other trainees before opening his outfit.
The A3 Foundation training with support from the Rockefeller Foundation is aimed at enabling youths to acquire entrepreneurial skills to compete favourably in the labour markets in Africa.
The target of the initiative is to train over 10,000 thousand high potential but disadvantaged youths across Africa between the ages of 18 – 35 in various IT applications.