The Gambia National Youth Council in partnership with the President’s International Award Scheme recently commemorated the World Youth Skills Day at a ceremony held at the President’s International Award complex in Bakau.
The theme of this year’s celebration was “Skills development to improve youth employment”.
Addressing participants on the significance of the day, Lamin Darboe, the Executive Director of the National Youth Council, said the day has been dedicated by the United Nations on 15th July each year world over to champion the work of the young people and the need for skill acquisition.
“We understand that acquiring skills is an essential element to employability, self-employment and high employment. If you don’t have skills then you don’t have a tool for livelihood and there is need for each and every individual, anywhere you go and find yourselves to acquire skills”.
According to him, NYC being the parent body of all the youth organisations in the country decided to celebrate this day not only to remind people about the importance of learning skills, but also to inspire youths to take skills acquisition seriously.
“If we want to be independent and self-reliant we need to be trained with skills that can provide us with a livelihood. We decided to call you to discuss and direct interface but also to ask ourselves critical questions on what is deterring us from learning skills; what are the challenges; what are the gaps in the current skills provisions mechanism that are available,” he stated.
Also speaking at the event, Omar Kujabi, a skill centre manager at the President’s International Award, pointed out that the Award Scheme has about eight departments which runs different skills such as auto mechanic, metal work, welding and fabrication.
He continued: “We also have the electrical department, home science department, tailoring and fashion design, hair dressing and therapy, secretariat duties to name a few.”
Kujabi indicated that they are also planning to produce new programmes including electronics, whereby smart phones can be repaired; shoe making, plumbing and building construction.
by Fatoumatta K Saidykhan