Liberia’s Foreign Minister, Madam Marjon Kamara, emphasized here recently that for girls and women to become productive in society, they need life-skill training, which is crucial to nation building.
She said the culture of dependency in the society could be mitigated by investing in adolescents through livelihood support as well as vocational and life-skill training, stressing that it enhances productive capacities of girls and young women with multiple impacts, while boosting their self-esteem.
“Economic empowerment and education of the girl child has been proven to be one of the most impactful strategies for poverty alleviation, and the prospect of gainful employment and the courage to resist injustices and assert their quality with male counterparts”, said the Foreign Minister, who is also Dean of the Cabinet when she spoke recently at the official launch of the Girls Ebola Recovery Livelihood Support Project at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection in Monrovia.
Indeed, life-skill training is one of the effective tools to eradicating poverty and promoting sustainable livelihood, not only among girls and women, but young people in general.
Liberia, with an overwhelming youthful population, should prioritize life-skill training in every facet of its educational system in order to produce functionally literate graduates, particularly at tertiary and university levels.
This is why we commend government for resuscitating and upgrading the Monrovia Vocational Training Center (M.V.T.C.) in Gardnersville and the other skill training center in Bomi County.
According to Minister Kamara, before the Ebola crisis in the country, a demographic health survey conducted in 2013 showed that 56 percent of Liberian youth less than 18 years was without parental care or not living with both parents.
She said the survey also revealed substantial enrolment gap between males and females with 47 percent women without formal education as compared to 33 percent male.
These grim pictures could be revised if we continued on the path of life-skill training and empowerment for young people, for they are our future leaders. We owe it to them both as parents and national leaders. Liberia would not rise further if her future generation continued to wallop in idleness and trivialities.