Youth Cso Wants Robust Youth -To Spur National Development

A clarion call has gone to the government and other stakeholders to adopt a robust national youth policy as a way of addressing the many challenges affecting the participation and involvement of the younger people in national development.

The call was made recently by Amb. Emmanuel P. Cooper, CEO of Think Africa Foundation(TAF), when it hosted an honoring program and beauty contest-TAF Golden Awards as a way of reaching out to the larger community on its thematic areas of operations since it was established 3 years ago. He noted that the challenges facing young people are not unique only to Liberia, it is global but other countries have been able to mitigate the impediments by adopting policies and programs that are youth oriented and have the potential of spurring them on to do great things.

“From latest statistics available on Liberia, about 55% of the population is below 35 years of age and what it implies is that there are more young people in Liberia than the older people and so for meaningful development to happen, emphasis should be placed on the youth so as to prepare them to overcome the challenges that hinder their progress. We need empowerment, entrepreneurship and leadership training programs to tap the potential of the youth, to inspire them for greater things”, the youthful leader of the group said.

He said since the formation of Think Africa Foundation in 2017, it has been involved in the promotion of peace messages and acquisition of leadership skills, entrepreneurship, capacity building and advocacy against child trafficking, rapes and gender based violence. He said through its flagship project which he called the PATH, the organization has been able to arrange a series of cohort training in business development, behavior practice, public speaking, relationship mentoring and general good citizenship training.  He further said that there will be a series of similar programs coming up in 2022 and will involve more participants.

When asked what was the intent of the honoring program, Cooper said that it was done to appreciate both state and non-state actors in good governance, business, academic, philanthropy, etc who have immensely impacted the society , especially the younger generation. He said four outstanding awards and sixteen ambassadorial awards were given with Amb. Kulubo E. Korkorlor, Amb. Emmanuel P Cooper, Amb. Michael Dakar Jukoryan, Amb. Lina S. Freeman, Amb. Praise Toe, Amb. Leela I. Richards, Amb. Hasting Y. G. Gwee, Amb. Matthew L. Gballai, Amb. Titus S. Foko, Amb. Gerturde Kamara, Amb. Emmanuel A.B. Zogar, Amb. Dorris Kamara, Amb.Emma M. Dean, Amb. J Bosco K. Harmon, Jr. Amb. Malavely Duyenku and Amb. Teeneen S. Zardee as TAF confirmed Ambassadors. Starz University College emerging as the best IT institution in the country while Blue Crest University College taking the best IT higher institution in West Africa, Mr. Prince K. Koinah, a prominent businessman into real estate management residing in Police Academy, was honored as the TAF best supporter. Also, Miss Ellen Anna Cole, a Biochemistry student from the University of Liberia, was crowned Miss TAF 2021/22.

Cooper told our reporter that he was inspired to establish the non-governmental organization out of the passion to assist young people who experience challenges coming up because he was in a similar situation having been raised by a single parent. He said no matter the situation, there is always a way forward once there is focus and a clear direction of what the person wants to achieve. He lastly appreciated and encouraged Amb. Elizabeth MK Nyandibo, one of the Contestants who emerged to the final but lost to keep up her good work as there will always be a space for necessary partnership with her through initiatives that benefit the younger generation of Africa. An appreciation was also shown to Amb. Melvin Nuah who attended the event as one of the launchers.

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