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Nigerian Government Partners with IFAD to Train 2,000 Youths in Ondo for Agricultural Careers

The Nigerian Federal Government has partnered with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on a new initiative to train 2,000 youths from Ondo State for careers in agriculture. The training programme is being conducted under the Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprises-Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) project.

The LIFE-ND project aims to equip Nigerian youth and women, aged 18–35, with the skills and resources needed to establish agricultural businesses. Trainees, known as “incubatees,” take intensive 1-3 month courses in high-demand farming areas like cassava, cocoa, poultry, and fisheries production.

Since its inception, over 14,250 people across six Niger Delta states have graduated from the LIFE-ND project. An additional 12,000 trainees are currently enrolled in the programme.

Ondo state officials say the training initiative is critical for improving livelihoods and empowering youth. “It is in response to the limited readily available options for the disadvantaged, most especially the youths and women in the rural and sub-urban communities, to improve their means of livelihood and help them live a decent life,” said Ogunmola Edward, Permanent Secretary of Ondo’s Ministry of Agriculture.

After graduating from the programme, participants receive cash grants and equipment to help kickstart their farming operations. They also receive ongoing mentoring and monitoring from LIFE-ND advisors.

The Nigerian government has applauded the success of the LIFE-ND project and its potential for enhancing food security. “The government will not rest on its oars until food scarcity is fully eradicated in the state, thereby leading to poverty eradication from our land,” said Lucky Aiyedatiwa, the governor of Ondo.

The agricultural training initiative aims to curb high youth unemployment while positioning Nigeria as an emerging leader in African agribusiness. With adequate skills and investment, officials believe youth can access stable incomes and improve livelihoods through farming.

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