Namibia: More Young People Trained in Entrepreneurship

About 20 young people in Namibia's informal sector are currently receiving training to ensure they are well equipped to start and maintain a business.

The 12-week programme commenced late last year and is expected to end this month.

Called 'Building Bosses', the programme is financially supported by GIZ Start-up Namibia, and Impact Tank is its lead implementer.

Elzine Mushambi, Impact Tank's founder, says: "Building Bosses was born to address the high levels of unemployment the country currently faces.

"We wanted to intervene in the issue of youth unemployment because the rates are astronomical and the potential for impact is long-lasting and multiplicative. We realised the youth unemployment issue in Namibia needed to be addressed quickly, creatively and at grass-roots level."

Located at the Bokamoso Entrepreneurial Centre at Katutura, Windhoek, the micro-entrepreneurship incubation project recruits participants from disadvantaged homes, takes them through a 12-week programme of business basics, and thereafter provides the 'graduates' of the programme with seed products to start their first business.

In addition to classroom learning, participants receive ongoing mentorship, access to a computer lab, computer literacy classes and the opportunity to collaborate in a community where they can foster their own business ideas.

The overarching goal of Building Bosses, Mushambi says, is to tackle the crushing problem of youth unemployment and inspire a culture of entrepreneurship among young people.

Once this culture takes root, it is expected to catalyse the creation of economically active ventures across the board.

Mushambi says Building Bosses collaborates with funders, volunteers, mentors, industry captains and corporates to deliver the programme.

Building Bosses recently hosted former Namibia University of Science and Technology chancellor Tjama Tjivikua, who shared his life story and inspired the young minds reflecting on his entrepreneurial journey.

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