The Management of West African Gas Pipeline Company (WAPCo) has said that over N 400 million has been invested on community youth enterprises scheme (CYES) within their host communities to boost capacity development.
Mrs Harriet Wereko-Brobby, the General Manager, Corporate Affairs of the company disclosed this on Tuesday in Lagos at the official handing over of start-up tools to beneficiaries.
The WAPCo livelihood program was tagged “Community Youth Enterprises Scheme (CYES)’’.
Wereko-Brobby said that CYES initiative was introduced five year ago to support and empower brilliant young needy Nigerians to obtain tertiary education and vocational technical training.
According to her, the program was considered as an opportunity to directly impact a large number of people within our host communities, which consists of a scholarship program for students for the entire duration of their stay in any Nigerian tertiary institutions.
“Under the CYES scheme, WAPCo has also trained 80 young Nigerians on vocational technical training and empowered them with tools to start up their business.
“We have make-up tools boxes, gas cookers and gas cylinders, industrial tailoring sewing machines and iron, electrical tool box and welding machines to those student who has successfully graduated from the 2-years training technical school,’’ she said.
The WAGPCo general manger said that they decided to equip the successful graduates to enable them set up their own businesses.
She said that the scheme provides young persons in the host communities, who had completed basic education but cannot pursue further studies due to financial constraints, the opportunity to learn a trade of their choice in recognized vocational and technological institutions in Nigeria.
“The graduands have been trained in vocations such as welding and fabrication, fashion and design, catering and hotel management, woodwork and capentry.
“WAGPCo has spent over N225 million on scholarship scheme over the last six year. While over N 167 million has also been spent on CYES program, which does not include the cost of the start-up tools we gave to them today,’’ Wereko-Brobby said.
She appeal to the beneficiaries to ensure that the tools are used judiciously to empower themselves in their various communities.
Oba Abudul-Kabir Lanlede, the Olota of Ota land lauded WAGPCo for their support to host communities in empowering the youths through scholarships and vocational technical training.
The royal father urged the company to ensure effective monitoring and mentorship of the graduands and students under tertiary education scholarship.
He urged the student to make use of the best opportunity given to them, adding that “you should be able to feed yourselves and your family with the economic empowerment given to you.
“This kind of opportunities comes in one’s life time, so you should make use of it judiciously.”
One of the instructors, Mrs Alice Okoka, lauded WAGPCo’s contributions to the students’ empowerment, adding that the students were well trained and qualified to start their businesses.
According to her, the 80 students were given N10,000 on monthly bases during their period of internship. By implications, the company spent N18, 720,000.00 as monthly allowances for two years.
“The company also rented apartment for some of them who live far from the training school. Today, I am bold to tell you that the students are equal to the task,” she said.
The communities empowered its young adolescents by WAGPCo are Ota Arobieye, Okomi, Egushi, Ijoko, Itoki, Owode, Igberen, and Ojigbo.