According to Minister Kallon, these young graduates will be staying at the Hastings training camp to go through 21 days orientation before their deployment across the country.
Before their deployment as youth corps members, he said they would be trained to nurture and cultivate positive working attitudes and engage in a year of dedicated national service.
He went on to say that during the yearlong national service, the youth corps would be championing community development and further serve as a symbol of unity in their host communities.
Minister Kallon saluted the young graduates and urged them to brace-up and embrace the challenges ahead in building the country.
He said the objective of the programme was to promote self-discipline, expand young people’s knowledge of cultural diversity, help to bridge the ethnic divide and provide them with the opportunities to gain valuable work experience.
Given a synoptic background to the National Youth Service, he said the scheme was established by the National Youth Service Act of 2016 with a mandate to raise a class of patriotic, morally, physically and psychologically fit Sierra Leonean graduates to undertake one-year compulsory national service.
“Today, we have defeated those Doubting Thomases who said patriotism is dead. The much anticipated day is finally here,” he said.
He said they were hopeful that historians and other researchers would mark this day as a new beginning in the journey of the youth of the Mano River Union to forge their nations ahead.
He reiterated that, “We are gathered here today as young people to contribute a chapter in the unique history of the Mano River Union.”
The Deputy Youth Minister assured that under the New Direction, which described as the Right Direction, “I am certain that in unity we would make Sierra Leone great.”
Whilst officially opening the orientation camp, Vice President of Sierra Leone, Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh urged the young graduates to be humble and ready to overcome the challenges ahead.
He appealed to the youth corps to stand tall and be counted among those who contributed to the development of Sierra Leone. He assured that government would support the National Youth Service for its sustenance.