ATTENTION Corps Members Interested In Entrepreneurship! – CBN PLEDGES SEVEN YEAR LOANS TO CORPERS

Do you have a friend, brother, sister, child or relative that is currently a Corps Member or about to become one? Most importantly, are they interested in starting up their own business instead of walking the streets to apply for white collar jobs?

Do they have the entrepreneurial spirit that over time, can lead to massive wealth creation? Are they ambitious and determined, with a vision of where they would want to be in several years from the now? Do they admire the big entrepreneurs; Dangote, Otedola, Folorunsho Alakija, Zuckerberg and others too numerous to mention?

If you do know of a youth corper like this, or if you are a Corps member yourself or an aspiring one with this spirit, then this piece of news is definitely for you!

The Central Bank of Nigeria has announced that it will give loans, as an institution, to National Youth Service Corps members to establish their own businesses. During a meeting with the NYSC Director General, Brig.Gen.Shuaibu Ibrahim, the CBN Governor, Dr. Godwin Emefiele, said this in his office at Abuja.

Dr. Emefiele pointed out that the loan was brought about as a means to reduce the rate of unemployment in the country, instead of youths who have just exited the NYSC Scheme to sit back and wait for white collar jobs. The loan is to be a means for the young graduates to create economic stability for themselves, and is to be repaid in seven years with a two-year moratorium (that is, for the first two years, there would be no repayment).

The CBN Governor maintained that the National Youth Service Corps members were to undergo the bank’s entrepreneurship training centres to learn skills in different capacities, and that after the completion of the training programme, the loans would be disbursed to the NYSC Corps members to acquire business equipment and business premises for the take off of their businesses.

Dr Emefiele added that the Central Bank National Microfinance Bank would also provide business finance for NYSC Corps members who were interested. And the NYSC Director-General asked for the opening of more zonal skill acquisition centres by the CBN.

This is actually a development to look forward to, and gives hope to interested youths, who have the genuine desire, determination and resilience to start up their own business, to take their destinies in their hands, and start up a business with the potential to grow big, instead of relying on the labour market to get a source of income.

Recently, during a study of 20 billionaires and their journey to powerful wealth, I noticed something really impressive; almost all of them were able to reach billionaire status after having started and successfully grown their businesses to great and outstanding heights.

With the CBN’s promise to first train the young Corps members before disbursing funds to them, this promises to be an innovative outlet to reduce joblessness among young graduates in Nigeria, and is truly a commendable gesture on the part of the government, as long as disbursements are carried out as promised, and on the basis of merit.

So both Corps members, and aspiring ones, for those of you who have the entrepreneurial spirit, you might want to start coming up with your plans on which particular business you wish to venture into, and begin to make enquiries on the zonal skill acquisition centre nearest to you; when the programme begins, the registration requirements, and the schedule of the classes.

This will also be a good time, if you’re not already in the habit, to start reading business books that will build and prepare your mind, and give you deep insights and ideas on what it takes to build a business up from scratch to outstanding heights, and also give you some idea of the challenges you will inevitably have to face in the process of building your vision. You know, as young graduates, fresh from school, we tend to be na├»ve about how the real world works outside of school; but books from experienced and seasoned business men will not only show you what they were able to accomplish, they will show you how.

Because building a successful business is not in any way for the faint of heart; you’ve got to be passionate, creative, determined, persistent, and focused among other things. You’re naturally going to get some hard knocks; not everything is going to go according to plan; and yet, you’ll have to keep on, with faith in yourself, in God, and in your vision, even when it appears as if there’s little or no hope, and when it seems that everything is against you.

Sounds too difficult? Sorry, but this is the mindset it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur; you’re likely going to be swimming against the tide; while some of your friends just pick up jobs and do as they’re told, you’re going to be carving out your own path. While they watch movies or go out on weekends, you’re going to be at work grinding it out, and coming up with strategies to make things work. I know; cos I’ve been there. And cos I’ve learned from many highly successful entrepreneurs; it happened to them too.

You’ve got to understand that what creates successful businesses at the end of the day, is consistency, after everything else. You have to hang in there, and keep keeping on. Now to your success!

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