USAID, Power Africa’s Clean Energy Initiative

by Oluwatosin Racheal Alabi

In a remarkable stride for gender equality and sustainable energy, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) teams up with Power Africa. Together, they’ve launched the “Growing Green Jobs for Women in Nigeria” program.

Historical data paints a concerning picture. Nigerian women often find themselves sidelined from decision-making roles in the energy sector. The 2022 Powering Jobs Census shows a mere 8% of women in STEM roles, a contrast to the 64% in non-STEM positions. This program seeks to change that.

Launched on September 26, 2023, the initiative promises to align with Nigeria’s sustainability goals. It aims to equip nearly 500 women and young people with critical skills for the energy sector.

Participants can expect a rich mix of learning opportunities. From technical modules like solar installation to soft skills like communication, the program offers a comprehensive training package. Moreover, job fairs, shadowing, and mentorship sessions will further enhance their employability.

Susan Oranye, the economic programme management specialist at USAID/Nigeria, sheds light on the bigger picture. “Nigeria aims for net-zero emissions by 2060,” she says. “Our plan involves freeing 100 million Nigerians from energy poverty through clean energy. The anticipated shift means creating 420,000 power sector jobs by 2060. This presents a great chance for our women to make significant inroads.”

With the world focusing on sustainability, initiatives like this are crucial. They address the dual challenge of energy crisis and gender disparity. Thus, creating a future where women play a vital role in shaping the nation.

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