At least 55 university graduates have completed an IFC’s Skills Development training to coach beneficiaries of the KCB Foundation’s 2Jiajiri Programme, opening an income stream for the job-seekers.
The pool of fresh graduates from leading local universities will now offer legal, marketing and financial management support to micro, small and medium enterprises across the country.
This is the first batch of trainees to graduate under the Foundation’s enterprise development programme, 2jiajiri, following a partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The graduates received training on Adult Learning under the IFC’s Skills development Program on enhancing the performance of businesses in the informal sector. “What we have done is to give an opportunity to the university graduates to earn some income through rendering consultancy services to the Small and Micro enterprises established in the second stage of 2jiajiri program.
We have thousands of jobless university graduates who we want to tap to drive the 2Jiajiri agenda,” said KCB Foundation Executive Director Jane Mwangi. “We are going full throttle in deliberately investing in initiatives geared towards addressing youth unemployment. 2jiajiri aims to capitalize on the untapped potential of small enterprises. If grown to scale, youth-led microenterprises hold the greatest promise of increasing the employment and wealth opportunities for young men and women in the region”.
In addition, the training sought to improve management capacity and performance of SME’s, which is part of broader efforts by KCB Foundation and to respond to the two main structural limitations facing the establishment and success of SME’s in the informal sector.
The program will effectively benefit SMEs by giving them the edge they need to accelerate the growth of their enterprises and a fighting chance to build real wealth for themselves and others. “2jiajiri aims to revitalize youth employment, restore a culture of self-reliance and stimulate the entrepreneurial spirit among the young, with the cumulative effects of which will be felt in the wider economy,” the KCB Foundation Executive Director said.
KCB Foundation introduced the Business Development Services as a support framework for businesses in the incubation phase of the 2jiajiri programme. The process worked well but there was need for more of these personnel to be trained to support the growing number of 2jiajiri beneficiaries. In conjunction with the IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, the Foundation commissioned the training of 55 individuals to perform BDS functions.
In Africa, the SME sector is crucial to economic growth, with statistics showing that the sector contributes more than 45% of employment and 33% of GDP. In Kenya, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics notes that the sector is responsible for 98% of the GDP, 50% of the workforce and to 25% of existing enterprises.
The 2jiajiri programme is making a significant contribution to the number of skilled youth and future employers in 5 critical sectors that form the backbone of the informal sector in the economy: Building and construction, Automotive maintenance and & repair, Beauty and personal care, Domestic services and Agribusiness