Minister of Youth and Sports Development Sunday Dare has said the ministry will push for the establishment of the Nigerian National Youth and Sports Award.
According to the Nation, the award is meant to motivate Nigerian youth and to encourage them to embrace hard work, healthy work ethics, team work and community development.
Dare spoke at the launch of the 2019 Future Awards Africa in Abuja on Monday.
He told the gathering: “Only recently the National Council on Youth Development adopted and approved the observance of a National Youth Day for Nigerian Youth to commemorate and celebrate their achievements and contributions to the nation’s development. During the 2019 International Youth Day celebration, I made a commitment to get the necessary Federal Executive Council approvals as well as the legislation to actualise this. “Further to this, we will push for the establishment and institutionalisation of the Nigerian National Youth and Sports Award, which we hope will commence in 2020.
“The award seeks to recognise and honour youth who have made astounding contributions in the areas of youth and sports development. In this way, we hope to project national icons that will not only inspire their peers but hopefully motivate and breed patriotism among them.”
The minister noted that awards, as recognition, have the potential to motivate people to excel in what they do. “Rewards and recognition is one of the primary needs of man. It is key to human or personal fulfilment.
“When a person is recognised and rewarded for his /her accomplishment(s), they feel a sense of fulfilment, which remains with them and continues to inspire them to achieve more.
“It also impacts on those around them, who are also inspired to strive towards success and excellence.
“This is hugely important because today, Nigeria like many nations is grappling with issues such as insecurity, corruption, disorientation, etc the root of which is traceable to breakdown or total loss of societal values as well as a lack of a coordinated and structured reward system. The importance of recognition and reward can therefore never be over emphasised.
“When we, as a nation, institutionalise such noble values, it helps us to raise citizens whose mind-set are focused on making positive contributions, knowing that their labours will not go unnoticed.
“Indeed there is nothing more stimulating and inspiring for an individual, especially a young person, than recognition and getting rewarded for their contributions. This way, we are able to redirect their thoughts, their mind-sets to embrace hard work and healthy work ethics, team work, community development and selflessness amongst others,” the Minister said.
Dare noted that plans for institutionalising the awards bring to the fore the urgent need of mentoring for youth, who he noted must be taken care of for benefit of the society.