Sahara Foundation, the corporate citizenship vehicle of energy conglomerate, Sahara Group, has launched its inaugural Sahara Regenerator Technical Program (STRP) to promote capacity building among youths in Edo, Lagos and Rivers in Nigeria.
STRP will give beneficiaries a platform to develop technical skills in the installation and maintenance of meter and solar systems to enhance energy access, combat climate change and promote economic development in Nigeria.
With unemployment rate standing at 33.3% as of Q4 2020 and anticipated to hit 35% this year, experts say Nigeria needs to provide ample entrepreneurial opportunities for its teeming youth population.
Targeted at 120 youths with informal/minimal education, the project is also expected to help empower beneficiaries with resources to build sustainable businesses and ultimately become employers of labour.
Sahara Foundation will partner with leading African academy, the Energy Training Centre (ETC) and the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria (REAN) to implement STRP.
According to Pearl Uzokwe, Director, Governance and Sustainability, Sahara Group, “the regenerator program comes at a crucial time where a gap exists in the technical skills needed to implement efforts aimed at providing clean energy through solar and bridging Nigeria’s significant metering gap. We are delighted at the opportunity to mould the next group of entrepreneurs in the power sector in line with Sahara Group’s vision to promote green energy and environmental sustainability.”
In 2020, Sahara Foundation revised its focus areas to two key pillars for all interventions going forward: Access to Energy and Promoting Sustainable Environments in alignment with our Group’s core vision.
Participants will develop competencies in the installation of single and three phase meters in residential and small commercial premises. The Solar PV Installation Technician program will train individuals to provide excellent service for residential and small commercial solar installations.
According to ETC’s Managing Director, Ibiene Okeleke, “ETC is excited to partner with Sahara Foundation in building capacity in their communities through these two programmes. The project will drive inclusive growth, poverty reduction through job creation and support the global energy transition mandate to provide cleaner forms of energy and aggressively reduce carbon emissions. We are proud to be associated with Sahara Foundation on this mission.”
Lande Abudu, REAN’s Executive Secretary stated that “having long recognised the importance of capacity building towards achieving universal access to energy, it is fitting that we combine efforts to enhance skills development in Nigeria. At REAN, we recognise the importance of collaborations and partnerships to reach shared goals. We are excited to work with Sahara Foundation and look forward to the positive outcomes that will certainly result from the programme.”
Applications for STRP will be open from June 11, 2021, to June 25, 2021 and can be submitted online or picked up and submitted at Sahara Group’s offices in the designated states. Interested participants can also visit www.ujanahub.com/strp and Sahara Foundation’s social media handle @iamsaharafdn for more information.