The United Nations Children’s Fund has said e-learning is an effective literacy tool for youths, learners and teachers. It stated this during a two-day media dialogue with journalists, titled, ‘Digital learning platforms,’ which was organised by the National Orientation Agency in collaboration with UNICEF. Some of the platforms discussed during the dialogue were the ‘Nigeria Learning Passport,’ ‘U-Report,’ and ‘The Youth Agency Marketplace.’ Other issues discussed were the overview of youth employment, skilling, and up-skilling in Nigeria and galvanizing support of the private sector for youth employment and skilling.
UNICEF Communication Specialist, Mrs. Blessing Ejiofor, stated that the programme was aimed at exposing the different digital platforms to young people, which they could tap into for positive use.
In his remarks, the UNICEF Programme Specialist, Joannes Yimbesalu, said the YOMA initiative was a digital marketplace for youths across the globe to build and transform their future by actively engaging in social impact tasks, skilling, up-skilling and engaging to find new opportunities. He said: “We are concerned about young people and giving them the platform across Africa to become employable globally. Many young people complete school but they can’t find jobs and the key thing is promoting opportunities for these people. We need to create this awareness to also promote the opportunity in the rural communities and urban areas, so young people can have access to the opportunities for employment.”
The Director, Policy, Planning, Research and Statistics, Ministry of Education, Dr Afolabi Adejare, explained that the Nigeria Learning Passport in partnership with UNICEF had trained over 3,000 facilitators and provided tablets for such purpose. He explained that it was a complimentary platform used to boost the normal traditional teaching and learning system. “The NLP is an idea that aims to bridge the gap between the fast and the slow learners, every child can learn at his/her own pace, and also revise topics that they can understand and assimilate. Teachers are also incorporated in the system,” he said.
The Adolescent Development Specialist, Mrs. Ngozi Izuora-Songu, described the U-Report Nigeria as a free SMS-based social monitoring tool for community participation to address the issues that the population cares about with a particular focus on Adolescents and Young People.
Speaking on ‘Overview of Youth Employment, Skilling and Up-skilling in Nigeria,’ Head of Communications, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, Taiye Tunkarimu, said: “We have had a digital grassroots programme with UNICEF through which we trained market people and artisans on how they can use the digital platform to promote their business, make gains and expand their customer base.” NOA Director, Lagos, Ms Adetola Adegboyega, advised Nigerian youths to be focused, saying there were many opportunities in the digital space to learn and make legitimate income.