This story is about a journey from the brink of despair to the world of entrepreneurship for Terry Ogolor, a YAGEPreneur in Fish Production located at YAGEP Fish Farm Cluster at Ugbokodo-Okpe. His life witnessed a complete turn-around immediately he enrolled into the state government’s Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP), otherwise, he would have been one of the teeming youths who waste their lives indulging in shady deals to their own detriment and that of the society.
This is his story.
My name is Terry Ogolor. I hail from Udu Local Government Area. I attended College of Education, Agbor where I studied Biology/Chemistry. I want to share my testimony of how the SMART agenda of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has transformed my life and liberated me from being a job seeker to an entrepreneur.
Upon graduation in 2009, I was unemployed till I enrolled into the state government’s Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP). Initially, I taught in a private school but discovered that the #10,000 I was paid was nothing to write home about. Thereafter, I started hustling on the streets, but the street was not friendly. One day, a friend told me about Job Creation form. Though I applied, I was not shortlisted. The second time, I reluctantly applied; I thought it was a scam, one of those government programmes. To my greatest surprise, I was invited to attend the interview after which I did not hear from job creation for a while. I became frustrated and concluded it was a sham and gave up.
On the streets to feed was a problem. So my friends and I decided to go into crime to survive. We planned towards executing a crime. While we were planning, the list was published and those who saw my name informed me I was invited to camp. At the camp, I had three square meals daily through the week. For the first time in my life, it was unbelievable I could have three meals daily. After three days at the camp, my friends called me to tell me that it was time to execute our plans for the crime, but I called it off telling them I had travelled. I was no longer was interested in crime because I was comfortable with life at the orientation camp.
At that point, I had a rethink and decided to get serious with my life after the Orientation and Personal Effectiveness Training (OPET).
After my three month internship, I became well grounded in fish production. My trainer was good. Shortly after that, I was given 2000 juveniles, 150 bags of fish feed, a monthly stipend of #15,000 for 6 months, 2 earthen ponds and other items. My assessment of my starter pack excluding the ponds was over a million naira. I was shocked and I began to shed tears. I then pledged at that point to do all I could to succeed in this venture, as that was the only way I could pay back the government for this wonderful gesture.
Apart from fish farming, I am also into transportation. I was able to use some of the proceeds from my fish farm to buy a tricycle (keke.) My colleagues at the farm pay me to transport their feed for them from the point of purchase to the cluster. Also, I use the keke to supply feed to various farms on behalf of feed sellers and I am well paid. My daily routine is work at the farm in the morning, resume transportation and return to the farm by 5 pm. I recently rejected a #75,000.00 job to work as a scaffolder in Port Harcourt.
Today, I am a happy fish farm owner at YAGEP Fish Farm Cluster, Ugbokodo Okpe. I can fend for myself, family and friends because of what Sen. Dr Ifeanyi Okowa did for me. I am a consultant by experience. I help those with challenges in their fish farms and the pay is encouraging. I have grown my fish from 2,000 to over 4,000. The sky is my limit!
Recently, I took my son to the hospital and in the course of billing me, I discussed with the doctor and found out he is interested in fish farming when I told him my occupation. As I am talking to you, I am setting up his fish farm and the pay is good.
Thanks to the vision of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Delta State, for making me a consultant to a doctor and many others in fish production.