Educat and GT bank have on Thursday introduced prizes worth Frw 11 million to award the best entrepreneurship ideas from youth.
The aim of the Educat-GT Bank Entrepreneurship Award is to provide high potential entrepreneurs with the tools they need to take their entrepreneurial dreams forward, as the empowerment of small enterprises across key sectors is a crucial part of economic development.
The award will benefit fifty top young entrepreneurship ideas and prizes will also include airline tickets to anywhere in the world.
By bringing access to finance and access to mentorship together, the participating organizations hope to spur the spirit of entrepreneurship amongst young business owners.
According to Andreas Norlem, the CEO and founder of Educat, the organization welcomes all entrepreneurship ideas in different areas of work as a way to contribute to job creation.
"We believe that in order to eradicate poverty, we need a middle class of entrepreneurs," he said.
Emmanuel Hategeka, permanent secretary in the ministry of trade and industry, said the government welcomes the initiative as it comes as contribution to the solution of finding employment to the youth, which is being an issue to the nation.
He called on other private companies to help youth's entrepreneurship, pointing out that the government has also other strategies to eradicate poverty by job creation like Hanga umurimo.
Rwanda's economy is still based for a big part on agriculture, but the trend is shifting to a knowledge-based economy. In that perspective, Hategekimana reiterated that Rwanda seeks to create at least 200,000 off-farm jobs per year in the next four years. "The population is increasing but the territory remains the same," he said.
Educat is a Danish social enterprise based in Rwanda that enables change makers in Rwanda to create significant and positive change for themselves, their community, and nation. It focuses on the growth of entrepreneurs and the development of the entrepreneurial mindset amongst the youth of Rwanda.