The Edo State Government has given its backing to the Save the Next Generation initiative, noting that the state government is deeply concerned about teenagers’ welfare and growth process.
Governor Godwin Obaseki, who was represented by the Commissioner for Youth and Humanitarian Affairs, Chris Nehikhare, at the launching of the initiative on Saturday, at the Church of God Mission International in Benin, said the SNG was a course worthy of great attention and support.
He notes that the teenage population was a unique age group where they notice changes in them, around them and make decisions, some of which might lead them into situations that negatively impacts them and the path to their future.
He said, “The Saving the Next Generation Initiative is a course that is worthy of great attention and support. The Edo State Government and by extension, the State Ministry of Youth and Humanitarian Affairs, is deeply concerned about the welfare of teenagers and their growth process which we are committed to being part of.
“The teenage population is a unique age group where they notice changes in them. Consequently, mentoring and building teenagers in the right way secures their future which also positively affects national development.
“The strength of a nation depends on the quality of resources especially human resources and the values that they hold dear. I wish to charge the organisers of this initiative to remain committed to this course and not lose focus of the goal as the next generation is counting on you to deliver to them the template for their development on which they can build upon,” he added.
The National Director, Agape Force Ministry, the teenage arm of the church, which is overseeing the initiative, Rev. Akan Sebastian, said it was about inculcating in the teenagers virtues of patriotism, perseverance, respect and integrity and other values that would impact positively on the lives of the Nigerian teenagers.
He charged the over 6000 participants at the event to start working toward a bright future by imbibing positive ideas which would lead them to greatness both in the physical and spiritual lives.
He said, “The SNG is about patriotism, perseverance. We want to use the initiative to inculcate back into our teenagers values of integrity and respect. It will be difficult to give values you do not have to the younger generation, so the adults should be in the forefront of this course by displaying the right attitude at all times.
The Director of Administration, Rev. Tari Ekupor, said the church was deliberate about raising the next generation, noting that the programme would be bigger every year.
He said the initiative would also help in sensitising the teenagers and put a stop to the exploitation of the young ones who were trafficked abroad for prostitution while the male engaged in wire frauds.