The Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Limited reiterated its long-standing commitment to nurturing future leaders in the country by training over 1,800 youths on viable entrepreneurship and career skills during the 2023 campus edition of its #YouthEmpowered initiative.
The Coca-Cola HBC #YouthEmpowered initiative, which is in its 6th year, having commenced in 2017, is geared towards attaining its target of impacting the lives of at least one million youths across 28 countries by 2025.
Kicking off the 2023 edition on December 12 and 13, 2023 at Yaba College of Technology and University of Lagos respectively, #YouthEmpowered is already proving to be a catalyst for positive change, grooming the next generation of young, skilful, and impactful leaders that can drive socioeconomic development in the country.
Olukemi Ogunsakin, corporate affairs and sustainability specialist at NBC, a consumer packaged goods company and member of the Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (CCHBC), commented: “We cannot overemphasize the importance of fostering the leadership capabilities of youths and their attendant impact on nation-building. So, with our YouthEmpowered initiative, we are looking at helping young Nigerians hone high-demand professional and entrepreneurial skills that will enable them to contribute meaningfully to the progress of our society.
“Whereas the first phase of the initiative has been completed in Yabatech and Unilag, we expect to reach other communities across the country next year, starting with the Lagos State University in Lagos by the first quarter of 2024.”
Adedoyin Shittu, program officer, Karis and Eleos Hand of Hope Foundation commented: “We are proud to collaborate with NBC on this project. The strides made by the company in fostering skills development, education, and community engagement resonate deeply with our foundation’s vision. Together, we are not only addressing the challenges faced by today’s youth but also laying the foundation for a brighter and more inclusive future. This partnership exemplifies the power of collective action and shared values in creating positive change.”
Alaba Olalekan, dean, Students’ Affairs, Yaba College of Technology, extended his profound appreciation to the Nigerian Bottling Company for selecting the college as the venue for the training.
He applauded the entrepreneurship and career employability training, noting that it was crucial for its potential to empower students in acquiring valuable skills and knowledge essential for their professional journeys and development.
During the two-day workshop held at both institutions, participants received comprehensive career development training that covered essential topics, including Financial Literacy, CV Writing, LinkedIn Profile optimization, Project Management, Negotiation Skills, Artificial Intelligence, and Business Planning.
The sessions were facilitated by a distinguished lineup of industry experts and thought leaders, including notable personalities including Radio host and content creator, Joseph Onaolapo; television host, Oluwatobi Sola-Abiola; Financial analyst, Samuel Shokunbi, and Adewale Onagbesan, CEO of Aristokrat Consulting.
#YouthEmpowered is part of the Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company initiative to equip young individuals aged 18-30 with skills, meaningful employment, and self-sufficiency. Since its launch in 2017, the program has reached over 41,734youths across 10 cities, and 9 campuses.
Beneficiaries have been trained on entrepreneurship and employability skills, resulting in a transformative impact on the lives of several individuals and the broader community. The intervention has also led to the birth of many start-ups in different fields in the blue, green, and digital economy, with tangible contributions to the Nigerian economy.