Kenya Commercial Bank(KCB) has launched a Sh 50 billion enterprise development programme aimed at empowering youthful entrepreneurs.
Dubbed “2JIAJIRI”, the pogramme will benefit at least 500,000 entrepreneurs in 5 years, thereby creating at least 2.5 million direct and indirect jobs.
KCB Group CEO Joshua Oigara said the project will also seek to provide the beneficiaries with the vocational and enterprise development skills necessary to drive employment and wealth creation in selected sectors such agricultural enterprise, automotive engineering, construction, beauty and domestic services.
“We have worked out a comprehensive youth empowerment programme informed by our belief that the youth hold the greatest sway in the pace and trajectory that the East African economy will take into the future,” said Oigara.
“We want to dignify the informal sector and give it the skills-set needed to churn the next generation of businesses for the informal sector” he added.
The Bank has set aside Sh10 billion annually in the next five years towards driving this enterprise development programme over the funds which will be used largely to support small and medium businesses run by the youth.
The programme targets 70 per cent of existing and potential and 30 per cent potential business individuals. For existing entrepreneurs, 2Jiajiri seeks to up skill and formalize the technical and enterprise skills of the selected youthful entrepreneurs.
Upcoming entrepreneurs will receive technical skills, financial support for startups and business advisory services.
Cognizant of the fact that not all are entrepreneurs, some of them will be linked to work-experience programmes to give them hands-on training while exposing them to market opportunities.
Already, 2,000 youths have begun classes in 89 institutions spread across the country for the various 3-6 months courses. After their training, the graduates will be put under a 12 months incubation programme.
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