Explore our work by: Country

Project Case Study

Helping young people find employment in Nigeria

Increasing economic opportunities for marginalised youth in Northern Nigeria

In Nigeria 62% of youth are under- or unemployed, and the vast majority (70%) of young people live under the poverty line. Jobs are scarce, yet the businesses report that there is a scarcity of workers with the skills they need. Marginalised youth, adolescent girls, and persons with disabilities are especially affected. With high population growth, this problem will only get worse over time.

Through strategic partnerships, Mafita identifies high-potential sectors for growth in Northern Nigeria and works with the private and public sector to encourage the adoption of international standards and improved curricula for trainers and trainees (both in the formal and informal training sectors).

Project info

Mafita (“Exit/way out” in Hausa)


  • 2015 - 2020


Mafita offers training in skills relevant to the local economy that will result in new employment opportunities for marginalised youth. Through the development of integrated services, the project also removes barriers for youth and micro and small businesses (MSEs) related to access to finance, access to markets, and business development services.

Mafita has built community skills development centres that offers youth the most-in-demand skills and has improved the apprenticeship model by introducing standardised curricula known as workspace guidelines and training trainers. It has engaged the private sector to identify job placements for an estimated 30,000 marginalised youth in Northern Nigeria and with the government to improve curricula and roll them out nationwide.



  • Established 12 Community Skills Development Centres (COSDECs) and trained roughly 3,500 master craftspersons (MCPs) across several trades for the apprenticeship scheme
  • Trained 21,000 Apprentices/COSDEC trainees, of which 50% are female
  • Developed 18 National Occupational Standards (NOS) and instruments for assessment and certification in apprenticeship and community skills development centres to ensure quality training for both formal and informal sectors.

Our Work

Explore our work to transform lives by making economies stronger, societies more stable, and governments more effective.