(L-R) The Director of Vocational Training Centre, Mr Dele Obaba; Director, Lagos State Agency for Mass Education (AME), Mrs. Oluwakemi Kalesanwo:Principal, Rotary Vocational Training Centre, Igbogbo, Mrs. Adebola Onabanjo;Liaison Officer, Lagos State Employment Trust Funds (LSETF), Mr. Matti Jubril and his assistant, Mr. Akinlabi Yusuff during the LSETF/AME sensitisation workshop for trainees/graduates of Lagos State Vocational Centres on accessing government loans for business development, held at Rotary Vocational Centre, Igbogbo.
. . . Sensitises Trainees on Accessing Loans for Business Development
The Lagos State Government has increased the number of existing vocational centres from seven to nine in order to reduce the distance youths often travel to access existing Centres. The two additional facilities, sited in Badagry and Epe Local Governments, will become operational from August 2021 to give youths in communities across the axis the opportunity to become entrepreneurs.
The Director, Lagos State Agency for Mass Education, Mrs. Oluwakemi Kalesanwo, disclosed this at the sensitisation programme flag-off organised by the agency for over 700 newly certified entrepreneurs by the State Government.
“The new facilities were put up by the Government to increase the number of annual trainees, particularly those within the locations where the facilities were sited. The initiative was also to improve compliance with the COVID-19 protocolsof the State Government”, she said.
Kalesanwo added that with both facilities, over 1,000 youths would be empowered with the right skills to become entrepreneurs as well as employers of labour across the State.
The Director explained that the programme was organised to sensitise trainees on the various opportunities available to put their Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) on track and grow them to multi-million Naira firms.
“They have been exposed by their facilitators but this forum was to bring them in contact with the officials responsible for the disbursement of the funds and other benefits available for them in the society”, she stated.
Also speaking earlier, an Assistant Director in the agency, Kikelomo Olawunmi,maintained that many entrepreneurs were not financially literate and, therefore, the growth and expansion of their businesses had been slow.
Olawunmi further said that appropriate book-keeping and accountability methodshave been discovered as other solutions that could assist entrepreneurs to keep their businesses afloat.
Explaining that the loan disbursements were for start-ups to expand their trades, the Liaison Officer of the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, Ikorodu Branch, Mr. Jubril Matti, explained that each of the trainees could collect between N50,000 and N250,000 loans for repayment in 15 months.
He said that some of the items each loan applicant must present for considerationinclude the Certificate obtained from the training institute, Lagos State Residents Registration Agency (LASRRA) cardamongst others.