The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme will be able to extend its reach with a grant of $5 million from the African Development Bank (AFDB).
The grant will boost the foundation’s Entrepreneurship Programme and scale up its outreach and impact to enable an additional 1,000 select youth entrepreneurs. These will be chosen by the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AFDP).
The Tony Elumelu Foundation will provide the lucky young entrepreneurs with the needed business training, mentoring, access to networks, markets and capital to develop their businesses which will boost job creation.
In a press release by the Communication and External Relations Department of the AfDB, Amba Mpoke-Bigg, the grant follows the signing of a letter of intent between the Bank and the Tony Elumelu Foundation, at the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme launch in March this year.
According to the statement, “The partnership will bring about future collaboration focused on strengthening small to medium-sized enterprises as well as talent and skills development for Africa’s youth”, adding that it will support 3,050 young entrepreneurs across 54 African countries.
“The Bank’s participation will enable an additional 1,000 entrepreneurs to benefit from the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Program, this will provide the much-needed opportunities to help stem the rising tide of unemployment and inequality facing the continent’s youngest citizens.”
“The programme aligns with the Bank’s ten-year Jobs for Youth in Africa strategy launched in 2016 to support the creation of 25 million decent jobs across the continent. The strategy is also expected to equip 50 million young African people with employable skills that enable them to access economic opportunities and realize their full economic potential across the continent.
“The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme will deliver business training, mentoring, access to networks, markets and capital for business development to selected youth-led start-ups in order for them to grow and create jobs.” The release said.
Other organizations such as Agence Française de Développement, the German Agency for International Cooperation, the United Nations Development Programme and the International Committee of the Red Cross also support the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme.
The AFDB grant is an initiative by the Bank to support the African entrepreneurship ecosystem by leveraging on the Bank’s instruments.
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