We are delighted to welcome the new YPARD Nigeria Country Representative, Eric Nyikwagh.
Eric is a graduate of the University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Nigeria with a Bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Economics & Extension. His undergraduate project research was focused on production and marketing technologies of citrus farmers in Benue state, Nigeria. He has been a committed member of YPARD since 2013.
Upon graduation, he started his career as a junior research assistant at National Cereals Research Institute (NCRI) Badeggi, Niger State where he worked with his senior colleagues and cereal crop farmers to ensure that the research they conducted was relevant and applicable to solving emerging farming challenges.
He also worked with Catholic Relief Services (CRS), Nigeria as a Technical Officer on Household Economic Strengthening (HES)/Food Security and was responsible for the capacity strengthening of partner Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to provide high-quality livelihood and food security services for vulnerable households and populations.
Eric was also the Agribusiness Lead for Universal Treasures Mines Ltd, Makurdi where he coordinated all business operations that were instrumental in achieving the strategic growth objectives of the company. Eric also served as the Program Officer for Agriculture with Eunice Spring of Life Foundation (ESLF), Makurdi and played a pivotal role in the establishment of ESLF Model farms, a project aimed at promoting youth engagement in agribusiness amongst other viable projects the organization implemented.
He is a dynamic professional with over four years working experience cutting across youth engagement, agricultural development & research sub-sectors. Currently, he works as a freelance consultant on agribusiness and food security. He is featured regularly as a trainer and facilitator at capacity building programs and youth development initiatives in agriculture within Nigeria.
Eric is a Certified Associate of Project Management and holds a professional certificate in Entrepreneurship Studies. Eric is an alumnus of the Enactus Nigeria and is a member of Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Network, Incubators Africa and Young Entrepreneurs of Nigeria (YEN).
Eric is very passionate about youth activeness to promote food security and sustainability. He plans to influence a turnaround in the Nigerian agro- space through increased youth participation in agribusiness, agricultural development and policy-making process using YPARD as a viable platform. Eric says, “He is committed to making young people become change agents for Nigeria’s agricultural revolution and supporting initiatives aimed at reducing barriers to entry for youths with special attention to youths in rural communities”. Eric’s motivation as the Country Representative is his drive to contribute to an agro-led development where youth occupy the central stage for promoting food security, creating jobs, generating wealth and strengthening youth capacity in Nigeria.
Eric believes that there are a lot of boundless opportunities across the agricultural value chains ranging from production, preservation, processing, advisory services, storage, transportation, ICT and marketing that youths can leverage for a greater future in Nigeria. Being able to use his passion, expertise and networks to empower his peers and help them realize their dreams has been Eric’s life-long commitment.
He is determined to continue the good work of Olawale Ojo the former representative for YPARD Nigeria. We express our profound gratitude to Olawale for the time invested in the country chapter.
If you are from or based in Nigeria and want to get involved in YPARD Nigeria activities, please contact Eric at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo credit: Eric Nyikwagh