ALERT Nigeria Set to Discover, Groom and Support 124 Young Entrepreneurs Annually in Akwa Ibom

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Mr. Iboro Otu, Executive Director, ALERT Nigeria

ALERT Nigeria, a Non Governmental Organisation, has concluded plans to roll out its programme aimed at discovering, grooming and supporting 124 young entrepreneurs annually in Akwa Ibom state. The programme tagged Iboro Otus Leadership and Entrepreneurial Discourse (IOLED), seeks to identify young Akwa Ibom persons with the requisite knowledge and proven ability that could be mentored into ventures that would have direct effect on their communities of origin in the state.

The programme, named after the Executive Director ALERT Nigeria, has the potentials to enrich young people in the state on effective leadership, good governance and entrepreneurial qualities that would transform communities in the state.
The Executive Director of the organization, Mr. Iboro Otu, recently held a media parley where he disclosed the criteria and the approach that would be applied to select youths with the required mental and attitudinal attributes to participate in the programme.

The Executive Director identified, increased opportunities for job creation and enterprise development; improved access of young people to global networks of quality resources, knowledge, skills, funding sources and mentors, as well as the development of model curriculum on entrepreneurship education for tertiary institutions in the state and increased youth participation in effective governance, community engagement, as anticipated outcomes of the programme.

The programme, Mr. Otu noted has been structured into three phases, known as IOLED project cycle. The phase one of the programme would include an essay competition organized among students of Akwa Ibom state origin studying in 16 identified institutions in the state. The essay competition, according to Mr. Otu is fashioned to stimulate the minds of young people to identify peculiar problems in their communities and propose creative solutions to them in this phase, participants are required to submit essay entries on the topic, Challenges Debilitating Youth Entrepreneurship in Akwa Ibom state Communities: Insights and Solutions Winners are to emerge, one each from the 31 local government areas of the state.

The phase two of the programme, he said would involve the capacity building of the winners of the essay competition in the areas of leadership and entrepreneurship, after which they would be commissioned with N100, 000 seed money to implement the problem solutions in their communities, which they identified in their essays.

The capacity building will be followed by a 4-week period where the winners of the essay competition, who are now designated as Commissioned Community Development Actors, would implement projects in their communities with mentoring from ALERT Nigeria and other stakeholders.
The Executive Director said that the sum of N31m will be spent per quarter in the project. He said that a 52-week 30 minutes radio programme would be initiated as a platform to engage the public on leadership and entrepreneurship, adding that the program will feature guests from diverse areas in academic and industry highfliers, who would give balanced perspectives to the audience on topics discussed. He said that priority would be given to guests of Akwa Ibom state extraction who have made success of their careers to connect and promote shared understanding with young people on issues concerning leadership and enterprise development.

The Iboro Otu Leadership and Entrepreneurship Discourse will be officially flagged off on October 4, 2017, in a ceremony to be hosted a time the Hubitz Place located at 69 Enwe street Uyo.

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