By Kelvin Ohoror
The Delta State Government led by Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa, has given starter packs to graduands of its Skills Training and Entrepreneurship Programme (STEP) trained in Welding and Fabrication.
The graduands were enrollees of the 2020/2021 STEP Cycle who had completed all phases of the training programme and had been certified successful and proficient in welding and fabrication skill, thereby empowered with starter packs by the Delta State Job and Wealth Creation Bureau.
Items contained in the starter packs include a 250amps Arc welding machine; a Siemens 220v, minimum 500v portable handheld cutting/filing machine; an electrical handheld drilling machine, Bosch 16mm professional; a drill bits; a riveting tools and rivets machine and pin; a tool box, electrical 2 steps; an Allen key, big star; an Allen key, big flat; a set of spanners, ring 6 to 32 inches; a set of spanners, flat 6 to 32 inches; a file set; an iron brush; an iron head hacksaw and a 25 feet measuring tape.
Others include a pipe range; a medium size scrapper; a size 10 packet of electrodes; a size 12 packet of electrodes; a lister generator, 150-170kg. 20L, alternator 230v, 50HZ with rubber male and female, bolts and nuts, fabricated steel base; a Muller Germany, big 2kg sledge hammer; a stainless 14 inches punch; 8 inches chisel and a powermax table grinding machine.
While handing out the starter packs to the beneficiaries, the Programme Co-ordinator (STEP), Mr. Onyeisi Nkenchor congratulated the beneficiaries for the successful completion of the programme, saying that the beneficiaries had passed each step on the way to achieve the stage they were now. He encouraged them to master the skills acquired during training.
He assured them that after the collection of starter packs, the State Government would not leave them alone, but would continue to mentor them through the Directorate of Youth Monitoring and Mentoring to ensure that the journey of entrepreneurship they started did not fail.
Speaking on behalf of the elated beneficiaries, Onalwu Ashinedu (Ukwuani LGA), a female metal fabricator explained that her passion for Welding and Fabrication motivated her to choose the skill, adding that she was confident that she would do well in it.
“I have passion for Welding and Fabrication. It gives me joy seeing men fabricating metal works. Though learning was challenging at first, my body system adjusted because of my interest in the skill. I can fabricate window protectors, gates, caravans and I hope to make a living out of it,” she narrated.
For Megbaliaghanje Isaiah (Warri North LGA), being a beneficiary of the job creation programme was a dream come true.
According to him, “I was jobless. I had completed my secondary education and had no hope of further studies. From doing nothing, I am now doing something. Also, I did not expect this quality of starter pack. With it, I shall open a shop in Koko town and plan my life from there. I am grateful to the State Government.”