‘KICKSTART’ PROJECT FOR YOUTH EMPOWERMENT KICKS OFF IN 8 STATES
From Chuks Collins
More funds and beneficiaries have been slated to benefit in the 2017 edition of the Intafact Hero’s Foundation “Kickstart” programme for the empowerment of youths in more states commenced yesterday.
This was indicated by the General Manager of the Onitsha-based beverage company, AB InBev Ltd, Mr Godwin Oche yesterday.
The programme, he noted, was formulated to appreciate their customers and consumers of their beverage products round the nation especially, beginning with Anambra, Abia, Imo, Enugu, Ebonyi, Delta, Edo and Benue states.
He said that it was aimed at creating and developing a culture of entrepreneurship among young people, by promoting business skills, managerial awareness and material support, specifically through developing complete business skills training; providing business grants as one time start-up capital for new businesses; grants to support expansion of existing businesses; and providing post investment support-mentoring and coaching.
According to him, the very popular programme has become bigger and better, pointing out that the 24 beneficiaries of the maiden edition which had a N50million seed money have all taken off and we’re doing very well in their chosen business line.
Oche stated that entries for the current 2017 edition commenced yesterday and would remain open for the next five weeks.
The programme which has no educational qualification limit, remain open to enterprising youths between the ages 18 to 35 years, who could also apply through the foundation’s website www.herokickstartnigeria.org, or to download the application forms and upload their business proposals or submit at any of the designated centers across the eight participating states.
The General Manager disclosed that “What we expect from the applicants is the potential to develop winning business plans that will create, identify, and evaluate viable venture opportunities. Applications received will be screened rigorously by experts from the Nnamdi Azikiwe University School of Business.”
Whereas shortlisted applicants would be trained by the Nnamdi Azikiwe University on business rudiments via a combination of high impact interactive teaching after which they will develop and submit their business proposals.
“They will be judged based on the strength of their business proposals by our pool of judges and the applicants with the best proposals will be given seed capital to either start up their proposed business ventures, or expand existing ones. For prudent business management and good returns, the new beneficiaries will be closely mentored and coached over the next one year.”
Participation, according to the company chief, was free and open to all within the age limit, irrespective of educational background or qualification.