The Bridge Concepts Nigeria., on Monday launched a discount card for Nigerian Students and Youth Corpers (NS&YC) across the country.
The discount card was launched in collaboration with the management of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) in Abuja.
The theme of the launch is ``Creating a Systematic Social Safety Platform for the Youth's".
Mr Bimbo Daramola, the Chief Executive Officer of the organisation, said the discount card entitled students and corps members to access discount on prices of products and services across Nigeria.
He said the organisation had partnered with more than 400 service providers across the country to launch the card.
He said the initiative aimed to introduce a systematic and institutional support programme to help alleviate challenges and improve the living condition of students and corps members.
``Many students and corpers cannot afford basic needs such as food, clothing, books and other necessities to enable them survive and carry out their studies to the fullest.
``The economic situation has imposed huge challenges on the youth population as some parents are losing their jobs while others are delayed salaries for long periods.
``These youths are made to pay the same as income earners; there is no systematic platform to avail them the protection they need from the vagaries of day to day living.
``Most of them therefore resort to short cut options and other vices with the feeling that nobody cares for them," Dartmoor said.
He said that the card would therefore increase the purchasing power of the users and bring a system of value, savings and convenience to them.
Daramola said the card would also promote the well-being of students and corpers by maximising the little resources they had to meet exigent financial commitments.
According to him, once the card has been issued the bearer can purchase goods and services at the discounted price offered by participating partners.
He said that the organisation would continue to make efforts towards ensuring that within two to three years the card could serve over 23 million students and corpers.
Rep. Tajudeen Yusuf, Chairman, House Committee on Capital Market, urged all Nigerian students to key into the initiative as the card could help reduce many of the challenges they faced.
He said that the world over even in developed countries people faced different challenges as no government could totally eliminate the problems of citizens.
Yusuf said that students and youths in the country may face various challenges but assured that with time things would get better.
Mr Tijani Usman, the President of NANS, said the initiative was a welcomed development as the association continually fought for the welfare of Nigerian students.
He said that the association would ensure that the over 40 million Nigerian students within the country and in diaspora were informed of the initiative.
``It is a laudable project and we will make sure that all Nigerian students at home and abroad key into this initiative," Usman said.
Mr Mohammed Abdullahi, a corps member serving in the FCT, also lauded the project and its organisers, urging all corps members to key into the initiative.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that card holders can enjoy from five to 50 per cent discount on regular products and services across Nigeria.
Students and corps members can get discount on goods and services ranging from libraries, education and training, telecommunications and Internet services, fashion and travels.
Other services covered by the card include food and restaurants, healthcare and medicals, leisure and entertainment, insurance and banking.
Some of the dignitaries present at the launch included Sen. Binta Garba, Chairman, Senate Committee on Education, Tertiary Institutions and TETFUND.
Others were Prof. Michael Faberode, Chairman, Committee of Vice Chancellors, and Dean of Students Affairs, University of Abuja, Dr Peter Adakayi.
Present at the launching was the President, National Association of Polytechnic Students, Mr Adeyeye Olusegun, and Mr Adediwura Adesina representing students of Colleges of Education.
Brig.-Gen. Johnson Olawumi, the NYSC Director-General, was represented by the corps Director of Special Duties, Mr Yakubu Joc.
NAN also reports that Daramola, the former Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), is currently the Chief of Staff to the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representative, Rep. Yusuf Lasun.