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Gov’t Earmarks US$10m To Empower Over 15, 000 Youths
By Prince S. Nagbe
MONROVIA, December 21 (LINA) – The Ministry of Youth and Sports has set aside US$10 million to empower more than 15, 000 youths from across the 15 counties under its Youth Opportunity Project (YOP) spanning the next five years.
Making the disclosure at the Ministry of Information regular press conference in Monrovia on Tuesday, Youth and Sports Minister Saah N’Tow said the money is a loan signed between the Liberian Government, through his Ministry and the World Bank in September.
Minister N’Tow pointed out that unlike other youth empowerment programs such as the “Youth Empowerment Program” (YEP) organized by the Ministry, which basically provides skills training, YOP is focusing on “livelihood opportunity” for less fortunate youths.
According to him, the project has two cardinal objectives which he named as improving income generation opportunities for vulnerable youths in the country and strengthening govt.’s capacity to implement its Social Cash Transfer (SCT).
Minister N’Tow noted that of the targeted number, 2,000 vulnerable youths in Monrovia, between the ages 15 to 17 will benefit from job awareness and skills training, while 3,000 others from the same locality will also benefit from small business grants to help them engage in household enterprises.
He added that some 3,000 vulnerable youths between the ages 18 to 35 in rural communities in Montserrado will be provided simple farming tools and agriculture skills to get involved in communal farming to make them self-sufficient in food production.
N’Tow also noted that additional 700 vulnerable youths from the remaining counties will also benefit from farming implements and agriculture skills to enable them engage in agricultural activities to alleviate poverty in the country.
According to N’Tow, the selection of beneficiaries will be done on a transparent basis through a data collection process.
He added that if there are over-subscriptions in specific areas, selection will be done through a lottery process.