Literacy Education and Attainment of Sustainable Livelihood in the Informal Sector of the Nigeria Economy
AbstractThe study is situated in the informal sector where large number of artisans and entrepreneurs struggle to obtain their livelihood. Literacy is understood as reading, writing and mastering of simple calculation.. Livelihood refers to the knowledge, skills and methods used to produce or obtain food, water, clothing and shelter necessary for survival and well being whether the economy is formal or informal. The study was conducted in Ondo and Osun states. Two hundred and eighteen (218) respondents from Osun and 153 from Ondo states were purposively selected for the study. Inferential statistics (frequent count and percentage) was used to analyze the data collected. The findings of the study are: some of the entrepreneurs/artisans did not attend formal school. Yet, they were able to acquire some skills in order to relate with clients in tertiary education environment; greater number of respondents with literacy reported that they were able to use their literacy skills in relating well with customers, exhibiting confidence, reading manuals and other newspapers and patronizing cooperative societies and daily contribution agents; the respondents who reported that they needed literacy skills to function effectively at workplace were higher than those who reported otherwise; acquisition of literacy skills was needed to ensure sustainable livelihood; the percentages of artisans/entrepreneurs with literacy education, who perform well in mastering their vocations, having clean work environment, having good sales, taking initiatives and seeking relevant information relating to their jobs, were consistently higher than those who held contrary view Based on these findings, the following suggestions are made: the entrepreneurs/artisans without any level of literacy education are urged to find means of acquiring literacy skills not only to improve their businesses, but also to enable them relate well with their customers whether they are in tertiary education environment or not; it is recommended that tertiary institutions’ graduates should imbibe the culture of entrepreneurship, rather relying on their parents and guardians or roam the streets after graduation; the organizers of literacy acquisition programmes are encouraged to include livelihood contents into their programmes for the entrepreneurs/artisan or for whatever categories of clientele either in the formal or non formal sector.
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