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UNICEF specialist advises students on IT skills, others

5th July 2024


The Programme Specialist at UNICEF Nigeria, Bharat Kundra, has advised Nigerian youths to take initiative, explore opportunities and be optimistic.

Kundra, in an interview at the Future Unilever Campus Ambassador Programme seminar held at the University of Lagos on Thursday, explained that young people should be proactive and not overlook the importance of 21st-century skills.

He maintained that when young people are equipped with 21st-century skills, they will be sought after nationally and globally.

He revealed that UNICEF would equip 20m youths with 21st-century skills by 2026, saying Unilever Nigeria PLC was partnering with UNICEF to equip 700,000 youths in Nigeria with essential skills to succeed in the future workplace by 2026.

Kundra added that the objective was to expose youths to 21st-century skills to transform society and establish themselves as professionals.

These skills include communication, collaboration, critical thinking, digital and financial literacy, and resilience.

He said, “Every young person should embrace the initiative. Sometimes, young people come across opportunities and overlook valuable information that could benefit them. Many of those gathered here today have taken the initiative and shared their experiences. Recently, we organized entrepreneurship skills training for 500 individuals, who were generously rewarded with cash prizes. Young people should maintain optimism, as it attracts support from various organizations.

While speaking on challenges confronting young people, he said, “Challenges such as access to electricity and internet are prevalent worldwide. However, young people, as agents of change, can overcome these obstacles with resilience and optimism.”

People Partner at Unilever Nigeria and Lead Project Coordinator of the FUCAP seminar, Zainab Ajadi, stressed the importance of youths acquiring critical skills to thrive in the workplace and be self-sustaining.

“Through our entrepreneurship concept, we aim to groom future entrepreneurs and employers who are willing to take risks to grow their businesses,” she explained.

 Ajadi noted that the partnership with UNICEF aims to create awareness about these opportunities, equipping youths for the future and enabling them to lead purposeful lives.

 She noted that one of the challenges was shifting youths’ mindsets and guiding them to envision the future, enabling them to adapt effectively.

In her remarks, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Development Services) at the University of Lagos, Prof. Ayodele Atsenuwa, stated that the institution, through its entrepreneurship programmes, was developing opportunities and preparing students to have an edge in the workplace upon graduation.

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