The Mastercard Foundation announced that it has signed the Host Country Agreement which will enable the Foundation to empower 10 million young people in Nigeria to access dignified and fulfilling jobs, 70% of whom will be young women.
Speaking during the signing ceremony held at the Ministry’s office in Abuja on Tuesday, June 29, 2021, the Honourable Minister of State, Ministry of Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba noted that the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works in Nigeria strategy is aligned with the national development plan of the Federal Government.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Nigeria Country Head for the Mastercard Foundation, Chidinma Lawanson explained that the signing of the agreement has further strengthened the Foundation’s commitment to providing millions of young Nigerians with work opportunities that will meet their aspirations and full potential.
Lawanson stated that Young Africa Works in Nigeria currently focuses on three key economic sectors, including agriculture, creative industries, and the digital economy with additional sectors being considered to further increase opportunities for youth.
The Mastercard Foundation is working with a range of partner organizations to realize its goals in Nigeria, including Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Pan African University, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Sahel Consulting Agriculture & Nutrition Ltd, Jobberman, and Babban Gona.
“We have formed partnerships with several organizations and are working together to leverage each other’s strengths,” Lawson said. “Through our focus areas of agriculture, creative, and digital economies, we have aligned with the Federal Government’s National Development plan to ensure we reduce unemployment in the country and unlock the skills and creative abilities of our youth, particularly young women,” she added.
Ms. Lawson also confirmed that the Foundation’s Young Africa Works initiatives in six other African countries are creating growth opportunities for women-owned enterprises and enabling young people to acquire market relevant skills that are in demand by growing businesses in key sectors of the economy.