YARAC handing over a business starter pack to youth ©


July 2023

Eighty youths and persons with disability (PWDs) in the Jebbu-Miango and Saya communities of the Bassa LGA in Plateau state received technical and vocational training from the Youth Adolescent Reflection and Action Centre (YARAC) consortium (an ACT grantee). The aim is to improve their livelihoods to combat the high rate of unemployment among young people.

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime,unemployment is a major trigger of drug and substance abuse. And the World Bank reports that over 1 billion people are estimated to be living with some form of disability. However, economic development programmes in Nigeria and elsewhere are still focused on the (perceived) costs of disability inclusion rather than the opportunities it provides for economic growth and poverty reduction. 

As a result, the YARAC consortium – with support from the ACT programme – established a technical and vocational (TVET) component of its project to constructively engage youths in both the Jebbu-Miango and Saya communities to reduce their vulnerability to drug and substance abuse, increase their employability, and reduce their participation in violence and political restiveness.

The project targeted those whose sources of livelihood were adversely affected by the 2021 Plateau Crisis. From November 2022 to January 2023, 80 beneficiaries (45 females and 35 males) were trained in vocational skills, including tailoring, bead making, articulation, design, and project proposals. 

The consortium consulted widely with community leaders, women, men, young people, and people with disability from both communities on the selection of beneficiaries. Participants benefitted from a one-day financial literacy training and starter packs with tools to start their businesses. 

“You are not giving us fish but teaching and empowering our youth to fish themselves. This is making them less vulnerable to violence.”

Bra Irigwe, Chairman, Traditional Council, Bassa LGA