The National Bureau of Statistics in 2010 registered that 60.9% of Nigerians were living in “absolute poverty” – this figure had risen from 54.7% in 2004. The bureau further predicted a continued rise in this rising trend.
One of the most successful strategies that have been applied over the years to alleviate poverty and curb unemployment worldwide is skill acquisition. A lot of women have become productive, better mothers, and supportive wives as a result of learning skills such as tailoring, bead making, catering, etc. Girls have gotten off the streets, and even young men have been empowered through skill acquisition.
The Rubies School of Women Empowerment, an initiative of Pink Pearl Foundation was created to further empower women and help them become productive members of the society. “Absolute poverty is measured by the number of people who can afford only the bare essentials of shelter, food and clothing. It is a known fact that the bulk of those who are affected by poverty in our society are women” says the founder of Pink Pearl, Mrs Orode Ryan Okpu.
Through the use of skill acquisition, the Rubies School of Women Empowerment is helping to reduce poverty and unemployment in our society. The first session of the Rubies school of women empowerment trained 105 women in different skills such as industrial production of soaps, body care products, tailoring, bead making, wire works, catering, and a general business management course. The women were allowed to choose the skill they wanted to learn, and professionals who have distinguished careers in the various skills facilitated the training and tested the women; equipping them with the requisite skill for starting their own businesses.
An exhibition by its first set of trainees will be held at the Cenotaph, Asaba, Delta State on 4th and 5th July 2013. The graduation ceremony will hold on the 6th of July, 2013. The exhibitions will witness the women showcase the various craft they learnt. As the first set of students of the school graduate, they are all going to be given starter packs to start off their own businesses.