THE ROLE OF YOUTHS IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
THE ROLE OF YOUTHS IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
The purpose of this research is to determine the level of participation of youth in community development in the Oredo Local Government Area. The study's major goals were to investigate the extent to which adolescents have and may continue to contribute significantly to the development of their communities.
The study also attempted to discover the mechanisms for mobilising youngsters to actively participate in community self-help. Philosophy has aided in lowering the high percentage of youth migration to urban regions in quest of social amenities. The work will assess the youth's contributions to the growth of this region thus far.
The hypotheses investigated include the following: that youth involvement in community development initiatives are valued by other members of the community, and that land disputes are a major barrier to youth engagement. To get information from the general public, a variety of data collection methods were used. A questionnaire was created and distributed to various respondents.
The questionnaires were completed by 100 people, and the full hypothesis was accepted and analysed. The results of these examined hypotheses can be found in chapter four of this study effort. Based on these findings, recommendations for resolving these inherent issues have been proposed in chapter five of this research effort. Recommendations were made in the following directions:
youths should be informed about how community funds are controlled or expended, youths should be given the freedom to initiate new projects, to supplement the efforts of the formal education system through training and impacting self-reliance skills that can make the youth more job creating than job seeking, and youths should act in various capacities as agents.
They should be beneficial to the majority of rural enlightenment programmes. That it is crucial to re-educate the youth on the critical role they play in community development efforts. By doing so, they act as conduits for the introduction of new methods of living and doing things.
The goal of rural development is to eliminate poverty. Youth participation in community development programmes has existed for as long as man has existed. Their contribution to community development in a specific location, such as Oredo Local Government, leaves much to be desired.
It is well acknowledged in most developing countries, including Nigeria, that the government cannot develop all rural villages on time. Aside from leadership, there are additional factors working against the realisation of a meaningful, progressive, and just society, which we have long desired but have failed to respond forcefully to.
Despite the fact that there are few books on the role of youth in community development or nation building. This study will look at all parts of the topic as evidence to determine whether or not youngsters played a beneficial role in rural development. Oredo Local Government is no exception, as they require the assistance or support of youngsters to assist the nation in reaching self sufficiency in areas such as food production and the realisation of structural transformations in the agricultural sector (Doorbus, 2001).
People look up to youths for active leadership, self-reliance, honesty, selfless service, industrial knowledge, patriotism, and discipline, as it is commonly stated that “youths are the leaders of tomorrow.” In general, youths account for roughly two-thirds (two-thirds) of the active population; by youth, we mean those young active, powerful, or dynamic persons in society under the age of forty. They share some characteristics, such as responsibility to difficulties (Oadire, 2010).
The community demonstrates that government alone cannot provide all of the development required; as a result, communities are to mobilise themselves by using the resources at their disposal to provide amenities through self-help and popular participation; we cannot overemphasise the effect of youth classes or cooperative organisations in carrying out such a task; no wonder BEJA says “there is hope that our country will still grow and survive into a great nation d”
The researcher will try to describe the vivacious nature of the youth class in Oredo Local Government. The rural populations' goal is that they will have access to basic social facilities. But, in order to avoid experiencing law level development, unemployment, starvation, and poor health care, the government can no longer or finds it difficult to meet all of these needs due to the enormity of the task at hand. Their participation is critical, and it contributes to national growth.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
THE individuals: The majority of the residents of Oredo Local Government Area are from edo (Bini), while individuals from other regions of the State are also present. Because of the development that has occurred in the area, the number of people dwelling there is considerably higher when compared to other local governments.
The people's culture is rich and pure, having its origins in Edo (Bini). It has its own set of laws, morals, beliefs, and values, as well as social, religious, and political institutions. There are also ancestral cults into which everyone is born; denying them is tantamount to denying one's birthright and citizenship. Marriage, rituals, new yam festivities, burial rites, and cultural dances are all influenced by their cultural values.
Their main occupation is farming and palm wine tapping; crops grown there include yam, groundnut, and others. Though there are numerous white-collar occupations available due to the area's development, their primary occupation remains farming.
The young: The young have a special formation where they gather together and discuss critical community issues. They aid in the enforcement of the law and attempt to influence the leaders' decisions by their reactions.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The purpose of this research is to look into the numerous difficulties in Oredo Local Government and how youth may be included in the community's development process. This research will also look at how the findings of the investigation might be applied to real-world challenges. An attempt would be made to determine the problem's immediate and remote sources.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. Do the citizens of the community value the contributions of youngsters in community development projects?
2. What is the amount of youth involvement in community development projects in the Oredo Local Government Area?
3. What is the level of understanding and consciousness among youths in terms of community improvement?
4. Is the presence of land disputes a deterrent to young participation in community development?
1.4 RESEARCH THEORIES
There will undoubtedly be arguments for and against the qualification of youth participation in community development activities in this type of study. To eliminate prejudice, hypotheses were required to be established, tested, and used as recommendations.
The following hypotheses will be tested in this study:
1. Other members of the community admire the youth's contributions in the community development project.
2. There is a rising rate of youth involvement in community development projects in the Oredo Local Government Area.
3. An growth in the level of understanding and consciousness among young people regarding community improvement.
4. That land disputes are the most significant impediment to youth engagement.
1.5OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The primary goal of this research is to examine the role of youth in the development of their rural and local communities.
1. To investigate the many elements that contribute to the effective mobilisation of youths for community development engagement.
2. To highlight the efforts of young people in bridging the development gap between rural villages and urban centres.
3. To assess the various roles played by adolescents and community leaders in ensuring the effective completion of a project.
4. Determine the extent to which youths are involved in community development.
5. Another goal of this research is to discover how the present togetherness among the kids in our rural area might foster peace.
6. The research will look into the activities of youngsters in the development of their rural communities and offer ways to improve them.
7. To gain access to the youth's participation in terms of financial and social organisation in raising people's living standards.
8. To investigate and propose ways and means for the government, social workers, and other social agencies to be involved in effective development.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study will concentrate on the rural areas (communities) along the coastlines of Oredo Local Government Area in Edo State for clear comprehension.
1.7IMPORTANCE OF THE STUDY
The researcher considers this work to be extremely important. Knowing the level of youth involvement in self-help projects will be beneficial. This study will make people aware that youngsters have productive talent that has to be tapped for the implementation of community development programmes.
It is significant since most teaching and learning today is carried out by teenagers whose studies are centred on participation in developmental processes such as adult literacy programmes to discipline, reading, and writing among illiterates in the community.
This study's findings are anticipated to provide useful data for exports in youth research.
1.8LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
There are numerous constraints encountered in gathering the relevant information for this study project. Thus;
a. Information was gathered through interviews, during which some respondents were hesitant to answer questions about their activities in the area where they lived.
b. There was insufficient funding to complete the majority of the work that was expected to be completed during data collecting.
c. Another issue was wasted time in which information was rarely obtained.
d. Time was another barrier that hampered information gathering for this research effort, as it was done alongside regular school lectures, and as a result, time was too short for comprehensive data collection.
b. Another restriction was a lack of significant literature highlighting youth participation in rural development.
1.9DEFINITION OF TERMS
The researcher intends to define the following important ideas in this research work:
a.Role: According to the Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary, a role is a predefined function or functions that an individual is expected to do in any given context; it could also refer to the role played in a real-life event.
b.Youth: Youth are young people who have outgrown their childhood but are not yet totally acknowledged as adults. They are commonly referred to as youth because they are powerful, young, lively, and very active in society.
The reasonable youth policy defines youth as anyone between the ages of fourteen and forty (14 – 40). By extension, everyone above the age of forty is not a youth and should not be treated as such. It is assumed, however, that any person or persons between the ages of 14 and 40 can give their fair share to the development of their communities.
As a result, any attempt by any organisation or community to isolate them in the formation of their development association would fail. To achieve success, it is therefore recommended that youngsters be included in such organisations.
c.Rural Development: The role of youth in rural development cannot be fully appreciated unless the main terms in the notion of rural development are defined.
The term rural refers to a local/community/village context, whereas development refers to the act or process of developing or being developed. Because most rural areas are underdeveloped, the concept of rural development was created to improve better living conditions for the entire community, particularly rural communities. Individuals and different schools of thought have given many definitions to rural development (Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary of Current English, 2nd ed.).
According to the United Nations (1966), community development is the process by which people's efforts are combined with those of government authorities to improve the economic, social, and cultural conditions of communities in order to integrate those communities into the life of the nation and enable them to contribute fully to national progress.
For the sake of this study, community development is defined as an organised collective effort aimed at raising the standard of living of residents in a specific area, which may include both physical and non-physical buildings. It is also a method of achieving local betterment by willful cooperation and mutual understanding among community members.