youth lead innovation festival

YouthLead Innovation Festival

#YouthLead Innovation Festival

The #YouthLead Innovation Festival which will take place on August 12-13, 2021, the International Youth Day, is a celebration of innovative youth-led solutions for the achievement of the SDGs and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Youth Responses to COVID-19

COVID-19 affects all segments of the population, with young people playing a key role in the management of this outbreak and the recovery following the outbreak. Though much is still unknown on how the disease affects young people, governments are mandated in the World Programme of Action for Youth (WPAY) to ensure their services meet the needs of young people. In these circumstances, it is important to ensure that youth are heard alongside other community and patient voices in the rollout of health and non-health interventions in response to COVID-19.

Building up the capacity of youth to be able to make their own decisions on health and to take responsibility for health is also a key element of WPAY. In this context, health education, public health promotion, and evidence-based information are critical in combating the spread and effects of COVID-19, especially to challenge the spread of disinformation online. The role of governments as well as youth organizations and community groups will be essential to ensure that trustworthy public health information is disseminated.

Read further: www.un.org/development/desa/youth/news/2020/05/covid-19/

france flag

Support from France to safeguard health and lives of millions of women and girls

Statement by UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem

The Government of France has announced its intention to contribute €90 million to the UNFPA Supplies Partnership — a flagship programme that provides modern contraceptives and life-saving maternal health medicines to countries with some of the highest maternal death rates in the world.

This contribution comes at a critical moment for the Supplies Partnership. As the COVID-19 pandemic upends health systems around the world, family planning has been one of the most extensively disrupted health services, and the greatest impacts are being felt by the most marginalized women and girls. Yet even as the Supplies Partnership ramps up its efforts to maintain and expand family planning, there is concern about donor commitments being rescinded and diminished.

This new support from the Government of France will safeguard the health and lives of millions of women and girls. We estimate this donation will help UNFPA and its partners prevent 6.8 million unintended pregnancies, 1.9 million unsafe abortions, and 145,000 maternal and child deaths.

More than a contribution, the support is an investment, one that will generate savings for families and developing nations by eliminating about USD $441 million in health care costs related to unintended pregnancies. However, the biggest gains will come in the form of empowered women and girls able to exercise agency over their bodies and determine their own futures.

The pandemic has tested the world’s commitment to multilateralism, and it has exposed the deep inequalities within and across societies. Women’s reproductive health and rights have been undermined, not only by interruptions in services but also in the form of spikes in child marriage, teenage pregnancy, female genital mutilation and gender-based violence.

On behalf of the UNFPA Supplies Partnership, we welcome this strong support by the Government and people of France and the commitment it shows to gender equality. Achieving a better world for women and girls means a better world for all.

READ MORE Support from France to safeguard health and lives of millions of women and girls | United Nations Population Fund (unfpa.org)

Sanwo-Olu

Lagos trains 8000 students on entrepreneurship, employability skills

By Gbenga Salau

Embarks On Massive Youth Empowerment
Initiatives To Tackle Unemployment

Worried by the growing rate of unemployment among youths, especially graduates of higher institutions in the country, Lagos State Government has commenced its youths empowerment programmes, targeted at final year students and those in penultimate classes in higher Institutions in the state, with the aim of making the 8000 participants entrepreneurs and boosting their employment opportunities.

The 8000 penultimate and final year students were drawn from all the higher institutions in the state and are now undergoing entrepreneurship and employability skills training programme, sponsored by the State Government under its Jobs Initiative Lagos (JIL).

JIL, according to Special Adviser to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Education, Barrister Tokunbo Wahab, is aimed at preparing participants for immediate entry into the workforce as employees and employers of labour, by equipping them with the new market-aligned knowledge, soft skills, business tools, and a mindset re-orientation that will make them suitable and qualify for their chosen careers in the technology-driven world of work.

Wahab, represented at the opening ceremony by Sanwo-Olu’s Senior Special Assistant on Tertiary Education, Youths and Students Relations, Mr. Omotayo Sanya-Olu, explained that the selected 8000 participants would be trained in such core areas as Soft Skills, Resume Writing, Work Etiquettes, Presentation and Pitching, Corporate E-mail Drafting, Negotiations Skills, Interviewing Techniques, Microsoft Suites, Microsoft PowerPoint Presentations, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Outlook and Entrepreneurship Skills development.

Wahab further explained that the state government came up with the initiative to up-skill youths in the state, by equipping them with all necessary skills that would not only make them employable and highly competitive in the competitive global market but also make their services highly essential for national economic growth, thus remain relevant in the 21st-century global digital economy.

He said: “… We have equally designed an all-inclusive entrepreneurship programme that will teach participants how to launch and run a successful new business of their own, with an in-depth knowledge of business development strategies and risk factors that will help them to stabilise in the competitive global markets.”

Wahab, who appealed to participants to justify the government huge investment in the project, by maximising benefits of the training through active participation, attentiveness and total co-operation with their facilitators, urged them to shun any form of evil vices that could undermine the government’s good intentions

Earlier in her remarks, Assistant Project Coordinator, LoftInc Allied Partners Limited, the organisation collaborating with the state government on the training programme, Mrs. Olatokunbo Aiyenimelo, disclosed that the state government in partnership with her organisation had earlier trained about 28000 youths in the first phase of the scheme, adding that professionals and experts in different areas were on ground to take participants through various skills development programmes.

While commending the Lagos government for the initiative, the Chairman, University of Lagos Students Union Council, Adesanya Sodeeq Olawale, also a beneficiary, said the programme would help to develop their potential skills, while preparing them for the challenges required for good jobs and entrepreneurship skills.

Ndukuba

Nigerian economy and youth empowerment

By Henry Ndukuba

The Nigerian Economy and the Debt Burden: We commend the efforts of Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria in stabilising our economy. The post-COVID era will be challenging. We must express our concern at the speed Nigeria is borrowing from International organisations and countries. The debt burden is becoming such that our future generations and succeeding Governments will blame all their woes on servicing the Debts we are incurring now. The diversification of our economy, especially the Agricultural Sector and Solid Minerals are viable sectors that must be explored. If we borrowed to create Industrial hobs and new Industrial cities that will help our Economy and create employment for our citizens, it would have been better.

Corruption Complex: The hydra-headed monster called CORRUPTION is Nigeria’s worst enemy. Let the truth be said that the Buhari administration, just like past administrations, has not tamed this monster. In some ways, this administration has made more efforts in tackling Corruption but their pitfall is in the politicisation of fight against Corruption. Selective Justice is no justice; it is at best a gross Injustice. One sees that the state of Insecurity in itself is a very lucrative business and industry for some people.

The lack of transparency in the execution of some good programmes and policies leave so much to be desired. When the Armed Forces complain that they are underfunded and do not have the weapons to execute the war against Insurgency and Banditry, it raises the issue of what happened to the One Billion Dollar Loan for the equipping of the Military to fight insurgency. Nigerians would like to know what is happening to both the Budgetary and extra-Budgetary provisions. We commend all the developmental achievements in infrastructural developments. While we are battling with insecurity we consider that it is not wisdom to borrow to build railway to Niger or any other neighbouring country, when we should cut down on the influx of aliens and are unable to manage our internal borders. The influx of Bandits from Libya and Mali and Killer herdsmen from other West African regions make it an imperative for tighter border control in Nigeria. These are some of the elements fuelling violence and insurgency in Nigeria.

Youth Employment and Future Engagement: It is a fact that greater percentage of our population is youth. This demography can be a great strength to Nigeria, if the young people are mobilised, given skills and can be trained and sent to occupy places in the world. India has utilised her young people to engage the Media, Technology, and Sciences in Britain, Europe and USA. Nigeria can do more and constructively engage our West African Region, Africa and the world. Youth Unemployment is a ticking time bomb. And with the prevailing poverty and frustration, the coming 2023 General Elections, the ravaging Drug culture, Crime and Insurgency strategic engagement of the Youth is an imperative. One of the Nigeria Media outfit presented a survey, which made it clear that “More Nigerians are getting frustrated.” They project that different Geopolitical Zones have a percentage of desperation as follows: South West 40%; South East 64%; South-South 65%; North East 70%; North Central 55% and North West 56% (Channels News; 2 May 2021). This paints the picture of potential flash points for agitation in the country. The major problem is that some politicians and leaders have mastered the art of exploiting every problem in the Nation as a means of exploiting and looting the system.

There is need for international investigation into all the Funds being spent for empowering the youth, the so-called job creation and loans. The misuse of the palliatives is a case in hand. While weapons are acquired to fight insurgency, economic measures must be deployed to engage our Youth.
(Culled from 2021 Abuja Diocesan Bishop’s Charge by The Ven. (Dr.) Princewill O. Ireoba)

using tech to put people first

The future of skills: using tech to put people first

Reskilling or upskilling for an entirely new role is often seen as a big leap, but data-driven tools could begin to make it less of a jump than previously imagined.

 

Artificial intelligence (AI) is regularly cast as the villain of the workplace. The truth is more nuanced. Yes, smart tech solutions like AI are on the rise. Yet, on the flip side, today’s digital workplace is also driving opportunities for new skills and career options.

A quick ‘what if’… consider smart tech: what if AI was also seen as a positive facilitator of new career opportunities?

The World Economic Forum’s Retail, Consumer Goods and Lifestyle group recently put precisely that question to one of its business-led taskforces – co-led by Unilever and US retailer Walmart.

“Reskilling and upskilling are often seen as a time-consuming and costly exercise by businesses, so we were interested to find out if data and AI could help in some way and, if so, what future redeployment journeys might look like,” says Patrick Hull, Unilever Vice President, Future of Work.

Job skills pilot project

In search of answers, we recently embarked on a three-month research project with our taskforce partner Walmart.

To assist with the research process, we brought on consultancy firm Accenture and Canadian start-up SkyHive, an expert in workplace analytics.

Two propositions framed our approach. First, that jobs might be better viewed as a combination of multiple skills, rather than singular roles. Second, that data could potentially augment human perceptions about the skills required for specific roles.

The second idea came from SkyHive. When the AI specialist used its data-driven technology to analyse job-specific skills, it identified an average of 34 skills per person in a role. However, employees often downplay the number of skills they have, typically putting the figure at 11.

There’s another intrinsic benefit of a more data-driven approach to reskilling and redeployment: the elimination of preconceptions, reports Nicholas Whittall, Accenture’s Managing Director of Talent & Organisation/Human Potential.

As he notes: “AI eliminates human bias that recruiters or managers often hold in terms of who’s truly capable of doing which job.”

Skill pathways

By way of a baseline, the HR teams at Unilever and Walmart selected ten different roles from across their respective businesses.

Each team then drew up a list of the main skills they associated with each role and the potential training pathways for reskilling people for different roles.

Accenture and SkyHive then reviewed the lists and subjected them to a variety of data analytics tools. Their objectives: to see what skills might be missing, to spot where skills overlapped, and to determine the most efficient way to upskill our existing talent.

By breaking roles down into their component parts and analysing them in granular detail, the skills gaps between different functions emerged as far less wide than initially thought.

Take two jobs that, on the face of it, may have little in common: an inventory replenishment manager and an eCommerce manager. The data shows that there’s actually a 63% crossover in skillsets.

“What the pilot has taught us is that AI and data analytics give us solid grounds for having an optimistic view about the future of work and the opportunities for reskilling,” Patrick observes.

Becoming future fit

Our hope is that other companies from the consumer goods sector will add their own case studies to the research (the key learnings of which are below).

In the long run, our ambition is that the findings will move from the hypothetical to the practical, informing how HR professionals address the pressing skills challenges faced by businesses.

“Focusing on expanding opportunities for growth for our own people is front and centre of our Future-Fit strategy. We know that if they grow, then our business also grows,” Patrick notes.

“Giving our people the training to fill internal skills gaps is good for them and for our business. If data and AI can help us do that better, as this initial pilot indicates it can, then great, let’s use it.”

As the research pilot goes forward, Patrick is confident that the role of tech will increasingly be seen as a friend, not a foe, of today’s fast-moving world of work and skills.

Key Learning: Future Skills Pilot Report

  • Skilling is just smart business: preparing existing employees for new roles is often the quickest and most cost-effective solution to filling skills gaps.
  • HR must empower individual talent mobility: emerging data and AI-driven technology can support HR’s efforts to equip people to build and shape their careers.
  • AI is essential for eliminating bias: machine-learning offers an objective, equitable means of creating new or potentially overlooked job pathways.
  • A culture change is required: upskilling needs to be seen as a competitive advantage or as a business imperative.
  • Cross-industry collaboration is an accelerator: preparing people for the future of work has to be a collective effort; no individual company can do it alone.

 

READ MORE: https://www.unilever-ewa.com/news/news-and-features/2021/the-future-of-skills-using-tech-to-put-people-first.html

N-power-logo-big-and-small

Youth empowerment through N-Power in North-Central zone

On Thursday, March 11, 2021, in Abuja, the Federal Government inaugurated the third batch of the N-Power exercise on the National Social Investment Management System (NASIMS).

NASIMS is the central management platform for the administration and coordination of National Social Investment Programmes (NSIP) under the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development. The inauguration was chaired by the Minister, Sadiya Umar Farouq.

According to an elated Farouq, the inauguration was in continuation of the ongoing strategy by President Muhammadu Buhari-led government to lift 100 million people out of poverty in 10 years. She reminded the audience that Batches ‘A’ and ‘B’ had already been implemented, stating that the 500,000 beneficiaries would benefit in the first stream of the ongoing process for batch ‘C’, while the same number of Nigerians would benefit in the second stream.

Farouq explained that the new batch would drive skills acquisition for beneficiaries, with the goal to ensure that they are economically active and possess the right vocational skill set to attract gainful employment when they graduate.

Fundamentally, poverty alleviation and productive youth engagement remain major challenges of modern economies around the world today. Nigeria is no exception. As a result of poor enterprise culture, the current, carefully designed poverty alleviation programmes and skills acquisition projects in Nigeria are now major drivers of change. They have assumed a multi-dimensional footing, cutting across all facets of age groups, educational strata and geographies.

It is common knowledge that the driving forces of economic growth and social development hinge on skills and knowledge. Beyond the current high level of unemployment, harnessing the nation’s young demography through appropriate skill development efforts provides an opportunity to simultaneously achieve national inclusion and productivity. Not surprisingly, large-scale skill development is the main policy thrust of the N-Power Programme.

From evaluation, it was noted that the inclusion of non-educated youths was important. Some stakeholders urged the extension of the programme beyond two years and that more sectors should be added to make it multi-sectoral in reducing unemployment and poverty. But clearly, the programme is not an open cheque and needn’t be so to be effective.

The CCT programme directly supports those within the lowest poverty bracket by improving nutrition, increasing household consumption through a cash benefit of N5, 000 monthly. Kogi State is one of the eight pilot states that started the cash transfer programme in 2016. It has two categories of cash transfer and livelihood support targeted at poor and vulnerable households.

However, some identified systemic hiccups challenging the seamless operation of the N-Power programme include insufficient information and wrong Bank Verification Number (BVN) and a few other minor issues. Good enough, the supervising minister has assured of reviews where necessary.

High-level Commission including co-chairs, H.E. Michaëlle Jean and H.E. Dr. Jakaya Kikwete

The High-level Commission on the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 Follow-up sets off on its important journey at first working meeting

The High-level Commission including co-chairs, H.E. Michaëlle Jean and H.E. Dr. Jakaya Kikwete, convened virtually on 19 – 20 January for their first working meeting.

UNITED NATIONS, New York – The High-level Commission on the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 Follow-up (HLC) concluded its first meeting of 2021. Conducted virtually 19 – 20 January, the meeting featured in-depth discussions on the core thematic issues under the commission’s purview and deliberations on its working arrangements and the roadmap ahead.

On the first day, the 29-member commission discussed the three zeros at the heart of the Nairobi Statement: achieving zero preventable maternal deaths, zero unmet need for family planning and zero gender-based violence and harmful practices, taking into account such issues as financing, data, demographic diversity, humanitarian support, inclusiveness, equality, human rights, participation and accountability.

“It was critical to discuss the key issues, including emerging ones, and also focus on key obstacles as well as accelerators to advance the ICPD agenda and Nairobi commitments, by diving deeper into the three zeros and the centerpiece of this agenda and its unfinished business,” stated HLC co-chair H.E. Dr. Jakaya Kikwete, former president of Tanzania.

The following day, the commission built off of the previous day’s deep dives, considering its working arrangements and annual reports, particularly its first public annual report to be submitted to UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem in November 2021.

In her closing remarks, co-chair H.E. Michaëlle Jean, former governor general of Canada, expressed confidence “that the work of this commission will bring hope to many people, and while we anticipate overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic, during this difficult time of many uncertainties, the commission should be, will be and is sending the message that it continues to work on the important and urgent issues identified in the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 commitments.”

Established in September 2020, the HLC is charged with advocating for, and monitoring and reporting on the progress on the commitments to women’s health and rights made at the November 2019 Nairobi Summit on ICPD25. Drawn from a diverse range of stakeholders including governments, civil society, parliaments, youth and faith-based organizations, the private sector and others, members provide guidance and recommendations for advancing progress and removing bottlenecks so that the sexual and reproductive health and rights community maintains its momentum towards a world of rights and choices for all.

The commission is set to convene again in May/June 2021.

READ MORE The High-level Commission on the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 Follow-up sets off on its important journey at first working meeting | Nairobi Summit (nairobisummiticpd.org)

youth engagement for global action

International Youth Day: 12 AUGUST 2020

The theme of International Youth Day 2020, “Youth Engagement for Global Action” seeks to highlight the ways in which the engagement of young people at the local, national and global levels is enriching national and multilateral institutions and processes, as well as draw lessons on how their representation and engagement in formal institutional politics can be significantly enhanced.

As the United Nations turns 75, and with only 10 years remaining to make the 2030 Agenda a reality for all, trust in public institutions is eroding. At the international level, against the backdrop of an increasingly polarized world, the international system of governance is currently undergoing a crisis of legitimacy and relevance. In particular, this crisis is rooted in the need to strengthen the capacity of the international system to act in concert and implement solutions to pressing challenges and threats (examples include some of the worst contemporary conflicts and humanitarian emergencies, such as Syria and Myanmar, as well as global challenges, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change).

Enabling the engagement of youth in formal political mechanisms does increase the fairness of political processes by reducing democratic deficits, contributes to better and more sustainable policies, and also has symbolic importance that can further contribute to restore trust in public institutions, especially among youth. Moreover, the vast majority of challenges humanity currently faces, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change require concerted global action and the meaningful engagement and participation of young people to be addressed effectively.

The aim of IYD 2020 is to shed light on the need to enable the engagement of youth by making local, national and global institutions more inclusive for the purpose of strengthening their capacity (and relevance) to achieve global action. 

This year’s IYD seeks to put the spotlight on youth engagement through the following three interconnected streams:

  1. Engagement at the local/community level;
  2. Engagement at the national level (formulation of laws, policies, and their implementation); and,
  3. Engagement at the global level.

The Business Current Account That Is Your Accounting

When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray gleams steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream; and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me: when I hear the buzz of the little world among the stalks, and grow familiar with the countless indescribable forms of the insects and flies, then I feel the presence of the Almighty, who formed us in his own image, and the breath of that universal love which bears and sustains us, as it floats around us in an eternity of bliss; and then, my friend, when darkness overspreads my eyes, and heaven and earth seem to dwell in my soul and absorb its power, like the form of a beloved mistress, then I often think with longing, Oh, would I could describe these conceptions, could impress upon paper all that is living so full and warm within me.

When the valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface.

Model Shares Her Packing List For Summer

When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray gleams steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream; and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me: when I hear the buzz of the little world among the stalks, and grow familiar with the countless indescribable forms of the insects and flies, then I feel the presence of the Almighty, who formed us in his own image, and the breath of that universal love which bears and sustains us, as it floats around us in an eternity of bliss; and then, my friend, when darkness overspreads my eyes, and heaven and earth seem to dwell in my soul and absorb its power, like the form of a beloved mistress, then I often think with longing, Oh, would I could describe these conceptions, could impress upon paper all that is living so full and warm within me.

When the valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few …When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface.