3rd Youth Leadership Institute holds in Nigeria

20 April 2013

Friday 29th to Saturday 30th March, 2013, New Era Educational and Charitable Support Foundation hosted its 3rd Annual Youth Leadership Institute at the RURCON GUEST HOUSE, Old Airport Road, Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria. Participants were 20 Undergraduates selected from 12 Nigerian Universities. The Theme of this year's Youth Leadership Institute was "The Role of Young People in Nation Building". The Resource Persons and Training Facilitators include: Ema Miroslava Billings from the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg Virginia,USA, Mr. Godwin Okoko, Country Representative, APURIMAC ONLUS, NIGERIA, President, Plateau Peace Practitioners Network (PPPN), Mr. Kingsley Bangwell, Executive Director, Youngstars Foundation, Abuja,Nigeria, Emmanuel Ande Ivorgba, Executive Director of New Era Educational and Charitable Support Foundation, while Barrister Timothy Barlong, Special Adviser to the Plateau State Governor on Peacebuilding served as Special Guest. The Training focused mainly on a new style of leadership that the world is calling for- Empathetic Leadership. Empathetic leadership involves considering what is important not only for career goals, but also understanding what is important for people’s well-being. Therefore, in order to be a strong empathetic leader, one needs to understand what contributes to well-being; first within oneself and then to others in community. Empathetic leadership involves leading from the heart. It is the foundation for happiness and a happy and prosperous society. Empathetic Leadership is deeply rooted in Social and Emotional Awareness. Africa’s greatest need today is ethical and entrepreneurial leadership. Too often, we have invested in addressing the symptoms of bad leadership in Africa- we give blankets, medicine and food to those impacted by war, poverty and famine. But these efforts will never stop unless we develop leaders who prevent wars from occurring in the first place, entrepreneurs who create jobs and scientists who sustainably increase food production and access to healthcare. Our Youth Leadership Institute seeks to catalyze the emergence of a new generation of youth leaders who will participate effectively in forging a strong democratic, people-centred development and sustainable economic emancipation in Nigeria. Major highlights of our Youth Leadership Institute include: entrepreneurial and financial management training; educational seminars on democracy and good governance, health, gender issues, human rights, citizenship and social responsibilities and a mentoring program that connects established and emerging youth leaders. The program empowers young people by supporting the creation of youth-generated activities that promote self-worth, responsibility and intergenerational respect and communication. The Program seeks to foster, develop and support youth initiative, and a strong representational youth voice in the service and decision-making life of our nation, and to engage youth as resources for peace, democracy and good governance, interfaith dialogue and agents for change, growth and sustainable development. The Youth Leadership Institute explores various models of leadership that have been developed from both a theoretical and practical perspective. The learning objectives of the Institute are primarily twofold: First, Participants gained an understanding of the major leadership theories. For each model, the Participants learned the theoretical basis of the model, the strengths and weaknesses, and how to apply the model to practical situations in business and other settings. Second, Participants explored their personal leadership style through a series of assignments and project activities. These project activities enabled participants to reflect on how they view leadership as both subordinates and as leaders. By participating in the 3rd Annual Youth Leadership Institute, participants developed a well-rounded understanding of leadership concepts for use in their own leadership opportunities. Some Photographs of the training are now available at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/needcsi/ The leadership development formula which we propose is relatively simple: we believe that by identifying young leaders with immense potential, enabling them to practice leadership and connecting them with transformative opportunities, we can help to develop and empower many more Mandelas, Nkrumahs, Obasanjos, etc.