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Published On: Sat, Apr 8th, 2017

Youths Off The Streets Initiative Launches $12.5M Int’l Fund Raising Campaign In London

Nigerians who benefitted from the empowerment programme of Youths Off The Streets Initiative in group picture

Nigerians who benefitted from the empowerment programme of Youths Off The Streets Initiative in group picture


LAGOS APRIL 8TH (URHOBOTODAY)- In search of pragmatic solutions to Nigeria’s high youth unemployment, it was indeed a gathering of influential people representing different nationalities and spheres of human endeavor when Youths Off The Street Initiative, a Nigeria-based NGO, officially launched its US$12.5 Million international fundraising campaign on Friday the 24th March, 2017 at the prestigious Grange Beauchamp Hotel, located at 24 – 27 Bedford Place, London WC1B 5JH, United Kingdom.
“Nigeria’s high unemployment of youths does not only constitute setback for economic productivity and well-being but also poses critical threats to the country’s peace, political stability, security of lives and properties. Today, youths who ought to be catalysts for Nigeria’s rapid socio-economic growth and sustainable development have ironically become the same perpetrators of various heinous crimes that create risks of insecurity and hinder socio-economic development”, these were the remarks of Comrade Kennedy Iyere in his Welcome Address at the event. He further stressed the urgent need to tackle Nigeria’s mass unemployment of youths saying “It is a Time Bomb waiting to explode with damaging consequences”.
The high profile launching ceremony was chaired by Babatunde Loye, Chairman of the Central Association of Nigerians in the United Kingdom (CANUK), Founder/CEO of BabatundeLoye Foundation (UK) and the UK Executive Manager for METLIFE Europe (one of the world’s largest providers of insurance). Please note that CANUK is the umbrella organization that oversees the welfare of all Nigerians and Nigerian Associations in the United Kingdom. CANUK works hand-in-hand with the Nigerian High Commission (UK).
The former Major of the London Borough of Enfield, Kate Anolue co-chaired the event. In their keynote remarks, both BabatundeLoyeand Kate Anolue expressed their unreserved gratitude to Comrade Kennedy Iyere for the patriotic spirit and the goodwill behind the creation of Youths Off The Street Initiative. “Comrade Kennedy Iyere is a true Nigerian of an uncommon patriotism who through the past years till the present time, have contributed so much of his time, efforts and financial resources towards Nigeria’s development”, said Babatunde Loye.
“Comrade Kennedy Iyereis a unique Nigerian whose passion for the country’s well-being is infectious “, described Kate Anolue in her keynote remarks. Speaking to Journalists at the event, Comrade Kennedy Iyere shared the primary goal of his NGO as quoted “the core official mandate of Youths Off The Street Initiative (YOTSI), is to empower Nigerian youths and other young adults to live above unemployment, idleness, poverty and the crimes associated with them”. In addition, Comrade Iyerealso added that his NGO (Youths Off The Street Initiative) is on a mission to help build a prosperous Nigeria where youths and young adults are active contributors as leading entrepreneurs and employers of labour.
The “Youths Off The Street US$12.5 Million Fundraising Campaign” is an international fundraising project operating through the platforms of Philanthropy, Charity, Profit-Generating Business and Financial Investment in sourcing and raising funds to support Nigeria’s youth enterprise in Agriculture, Food Production and other key sectors of the economy.
“Nigerian youths always lack the funds needed to turn their skills and business ideas into realities” said Comrade Kennedy Iyere.
David Smith, Chairman of British African Business Alliance was the keynote speaker at the launch of the “Youths Off The Street US$12.5 Million Fundraising Campaign, according to him, Nigeria needs to grow its SME Sector if the country’s challenge of high youth unemployment must be squarely tackled. Also, Sam Foxman, a prolific British fundraising expert and CEO of Developed Africa, stressed the need to drive the growth of Nigeria’s SME Sector as a panacea for youth unemployment.
Others who delivered remarks at the event were Godson Azu, General Secretary, Nigerians In Diaspora Organizations (UK), Yolanda CHI, Secretary-General, UK-CHINA Culture and Technology Exchange Association; OtumbaMobolajiFalasie, President, Yoruba Council of Elders (Europe/North America); FunmiAdemilua, CEO, Good Samaritan Foundation, Tunde Alabi, Head of News Desk, BEN Television London and Hauwa Yusuf, former NTA UK/Europe Bureau Chief.

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