Every year, the Centre for Social Awareness, Advocacy and Ethics, Inc. (CSAAEINC) organizes an International Youth Leadership, Career Building and Entrepreneurship Summit in Africa. The three-day summit usually features two major activities. The first two days are dedicated to the mid-year leadership summit of Emerging African Leaders undergoing a three-year rigorous ethical and creative leadership mentoring under the Centre’s Emerging African Leaders Program (ELP). The third day is dedicated to a campus-wide career building and entrepreneurship training as part of the Centre’s Career Building and Entrepreneurship Program (CBEP).
The 5th International Youth Leadership, Entrepreneurship and Career Building Summit was held at the University of Ilorin, Kwara State from May 31, to June 2, 2018. Over fifty Emerging Nigerian Leaders participated in the mid-year leadership summit to present their various community development projects. The summit started on May 31 through June 1, 2018, and was held at E-Phoenix Hotel, Illorin.
As part of the three-year leadership training at CSAAEINC, ELP requires emerging leaders to initiate and execute projects that solve specific community problems in Nigeria. Engagement in community development project is designed to expose these future leaders to the various African socioeconomic problems, teach them problem-solving skills as well as project management skills in preparation for public service in the near future.
Through this, the Centre has inspired over 38 community projects that are tackling various problems in Nigeria. For instance, one of the Emerging Nigerian Leaders by name Magdalene Okoro has visited over 70 schools educating students on the danger of filthy environment while working with them to clean up the environment. Christopher Ngwuma, a student of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, is experimenting on a new technology that can be used to purify muddy water for local consumption. All presenters received feedbacks from peers and a team of local and international facilitators in the areas of project management, funding and investment, business and entrepreneurship opportunity as well as career choice.
The campus-wide career building and entrepreneurship training which took place at the University of Ilorin’s CILST Auditorium on June 2nd commenced with a keynote address by CSAAEINC Founder and President, Rev. Fr. Dr Godswill Agbagwa. In his off-paper keynote address, the Catholic priest charged youths to rise up to their roles as leaders of today, not tomorrow. The ethics professor known for his love for Nigerian youths expressed his conviction that a better Nigeria is possible with the millennials if they can be properly guided. “This is the reason why I founded CSAAEINC, to help youths build the capacities, competencies and character to help facilitate development, end poverty and make Africa a better place,” he said.
In his welcome speech, the Vice Chancellor of UNILORIN, represented by Dr. Faruk thanked the Centre for this initiative and expressed interest in collaborating with the Centre in the areas of entrepreneurship. There were trainings on entrepreneurship and business opportunities by Mr. Mene Blessing, funding and investment opportunities by Dr Farouk Kurawa, project management and grant writing by Onyebuchi Chukwuemeka, job opportunities by Alex Ugwuezuonu and further studies abroad by Abimbola Akintolayo. Two alumni of ELP, Pantaleon Uwaleme and Ishola Kayode shared their success stories and the huge roles CSAAEINC played in helping make their dreams come to reality. Also present was Comrade Obetta Chika Emmanuel, an alumnus of ELP and an aspirant for Enugu State House of Assembly. Obetta engaged participants on policy-making and the need for youths to actively participate in the upcoming 2019 general elections at state and national levels.
As part of its efforts to nurture key players in development, the Centre launched Youth Media Initiative (YMI) as a platform for nurturing aspiring medieval professionals in ethical and investigative journalism for the purposes of facilitating development. Fourteen aspiring media professionals selected through a rigorous merit-based process were inducted into the program.
Other dignitaries at the event include Ms. Adebola Asunmo from the Ministry of Youths and Sports, Abuja, as well as members of the press. The event ended with pro-bono consulting and one-on-one coaching by the Centre’s career and entrepreneurship development experts. Over 450 youths from across Nigeria participated in the training.