On 15 and 16 March 2019, Fifty (50) rural youths will complete the Global Youth Innovation Network (GYIN)- The Gambia Chapter six months mentorship program, which started on 16September 2018.
The event will be held in Jenoi Agricultural Rural Farmers Training Centre, in Lower River Region starting next Saturday.
The mentorship program objectives is to advice and guide the mentees on the right path of enterprise management; equip the mentees with best practices of running a venture such as taxation, business registrations, bank savings etc; instil in them the culture of running a venture with passion and pleasure; and to unlock the hidden potentials and abilities in the participants.
By the fourth month of the Mentorship Programme, most of the mentees registered tremendous successes as per their undertakings.
Areas covered during the mentorship program include Business Registration, Savings Accounts, Business Expansion, Access to Finance (Grants), and Access to Loan methods.
“During the commencement of the mentorship programme, 30 of the mentees did not know the importance of business registration and as a result didn’t register their businesses but currently, 41 of the mentees have secured business registration certificates and Tin numbers,” Mamadou Edrissa Njie- GYIN Gambia Executive Director stated. Adding, “24 mentees have now created separate business accounts different from their personal savings accounts.”
He further stated that the mentees are making best use of the $1000 Mini Grant Scheme of the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP), noting that19 mentees benefited from the YEP mini grant and other grants support through the mentorship programme and are able to fill the forms by the help of their mentors. In addition, the D10, 000 award prizes for the five (5) Best Selected ELIT Participants have scaled up their businesses.
“During the mentorship programme, 10 of the mentees has accessed to mini loans from various financial institutions ranging from the YEP Project, Supersonics, GIEPA as well as their family members. GYIN Gambia, in some cases, also provides soft loans to the mentees in a bid to support their undertakings,” Mr Njie asserted.
GYIN Gambia Chapter Youth Mentorship Programme started in 2017 to help rural young entrepreneurs’ identify and overcome obstacles to growth.
It could be recalled that on the 31 August 2017, GYIN Gambia and The Gambia Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) signed a grant MoU – three (3) months with the purpose of providing one-to-one mentoring to high-potential young entrepreneurs. The aim of the Youth Mentorship Programme on Enterprise Management is to boost Gambian rural entrepreneurship and agribusiness. The programme supports young people in their efforts to establish sustainable investments in order to become self-reliant. It is anchored on coaching and career counselling rather than the single method of structured trainings.
Authored by Madi S. Njie