The African Development Bank (AfDB), through its Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund, has provided more than $7.3 million for youth empowerment.
According to a statement from the bank on Tuesday, August 24, 2021, the fund provides project preparation and co-financing for bank projects and places emphasis on employability, entrepreneurship and job creation.
“In June and July of this year, an African Development Bank’s technical review committee approved eight project proposals to receive funding in an important milestone for its Jobs for Youth in Africa Strategy.
“Approved proposals will receive grant funding of more than 7.3 million dollars to operationalise their activities, creating several new enterprises and an estimated 20,000 jobs for youths across the continent,” the statement noted.
It added that the fund placed emphasis on employability, entrepreneurship and job creation through enterprise and value chain development.
“The fund has also supported countries that implement policies conducive to private sector development and youth employment.
“The call for project proposals reflects the Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department’s strategic intent to leverage and integrate youth employment and employability into the Bank’s operations in African Development Fund countries,” said the statement.
Martha Phiri, Director of the bank’s Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department, said the Fund was increasingly viewed as a destination resource for financing AFDB’s scaled up efforts to create decent jobs for young women and men.
The bank further noted in the statement that several of the approved proposals were submitted in response to a call from the Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department (AHHD) through the fund late last year.
“Bank offices, complexes and departments from across regional member countries submitted nearly 24 proposals for committee review,” said the statement.
It further stated that themes submitted included capacity building for entrepreneurs, climate change, gender, affordable housing, food security, migration and textiles, with the common thread of creating decent jobs for young women and men.
Launched in November 2017, the fund promotes the creation of sustainable jobs for young Africans by equipping youth and women-led startups, as well as micro, small and medium enterprises with the skills, financial support and enabling environments to run bankable businesses.
By Temitope Ponle