The Catholic Diocese of Nnewi, Anambra, says it is targeting to produce no fewer than 500 new business owners and entrepreneurs through its foundation, Assumption Foundation for Diocesan Empowerment (AFDE).
The foundation’s Chairman, Rev. Fr. Daniel Ileka, made the disclosure at the end of a three-day empowerment training for 350 persons at St. Cletus Catholic Church, Nnewi on Friday.
Ileka said the training had equipped the participants with the requisite skills for modern business management, adding that the foundation would provide funding for the eligible ones.
“We are thinking that by the end of the year, we must have raised at least 500 entrepreneurs who are going to be in charge of their business and these people are going to employ at least two persons.
“Those who are trained are going home with great economic tips for their businesses, for management of their finances and knowledge for strategy building.
“They have been taught documentation which is very difficult for most people, especially those who get daily revenues and need to become more systematic in their business approach,” he said.
Ileka called on the people of the area to take advantage of the opportunity provided by the diocese and key into the empowerment training and benefit from the one digit interest rate loans for small businesses.
“Presently, our financial partners are First Bank, Keystone Bank and our own Chukwunenye Microfinance bank, and they have designed a scheme to fund trainees who qualified for the funding.
“In July, we are going to have another training which will be more skill area specific, they shall be in groups of fashion design, agriculture, production and marketing,” he said.
Some of the participants who spoke to News Agency of Nigeria said the training was beneficial to them as they learnt new lessons on how to manage an enterprise.
Mr Ikechukwu Obi, a petty trader, thanked the foundation for exposing him and other trainees to the new opportunities in business management.
Miss Ogechi Osideora, a student, said she had realised that good financial management was the pivot of business.
She said she was looking forward to owning business after her studies.