A World Bank-assisted intervention program ‘Lagos CARES’ which is under the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus has commenced a 4-weeks technical and vocational training for indigent and vulnerable residents across 3 Local Government Areas of Lagos State.
Speaking prior to the commencement of the empowerment training, Mr Basit Baruwa, the Acting State Project Coordinator of the State CARES Coordinating Unit, , said a that the programme was organised for free to engage women in the state.
Baruwa said that the beneficiaries were picked on merit for seamless and proper coordination of the process.
He expressed of the Government’s readiness to empower the beneficiaries at the end of the training Programme, noting that the support project is expected to target households and micro-businesses from the informal sector with a view to empowering them.
The Coordinator further said that, orientation exercise was organized for project staff that will work at the grassroots level.for full realization of economic sustainability
According to the Head of Delivery platform DLI 1.3 ; Mrs Toyin Salami, the project was a collaboration between the Federal Government through a World Bank funded programme with the State to alleviate the plights of its citizenry from the experiences induced by the COVID-19 pandemic, through various skills acquisition training and empowerment support.
She said “The objective of the livelihood grant component of Results Area 1.3 is to provide short livelihoods and soft skills training as well as one-off payments, in order to ensure economically active and self-employed young women in Lagos State.”
“Beneficiaries for the livelihood grants will be selected using the State Social Register at the Ministry Of Economic Planning and Budget. Particularly, household enterprises in the informal sector will be prioritized for support.
“The livelihood support team will further conduct a physical verification exercise for final selection of beneficiaries.
“It is quite note worthy that household member selected for the grant , must be productive and agile ,one who is able to engage in some form of micro-enterprise.
“There is an approved grants size to be disbursed ranging from N20,000 to N 200,000 based on the screening of micro- business plans submitted by the beneficiaries. “ Salami added
While reiterating on the pertinence of such trainings the Head DLI 1.3 , Livelihood Support platform explained that despite several social protection programs being launched in the last few years, coverage of safety net programs remains alarmingly low.
She said “This is in direct contrast to the objectives laid out in the national-level documents and despite evidence linking safety net programs to improved human capital outcomes for the poor in the country.
“Several initiatives have been under way to reduce fragmentation among smaller ad hoc safety net programs, and to create an institutional structure at the federal, state, and local government authority (LGA) levels to strengthen the coordination and implementation of interventions related to protecting the poor and the vulnerable.”
Salami added that 13 vocations would be taught to 2,145 participants of which 3 Local Government Areas as Ibeshe, Ajeromi/Ifelodun LG as well as Apapa LG which are already running simultaneously.
Some of the vocations are pomade/soap making, sewing, Ankara Craft/leather work, photography, hair, and wig making, and throw pillows/interior accessories among others.