The African Development Bank has launched a multinational project to create jobs and improve livelihoods for youth in Uganda. The Creating Sustainable Youth MSMEs Through Urban Farming (SYMUF) initiative will support young farmers in Uganda, who are attracted to urban farming.
The bank is partnering with the African Agribusiness Incubation Network in Uganda. The SYMUF project has received $937,000 in grant funding from the Fund for African Private Sector Assistance, a multi-donor trust fund managed by the African Development Bank.
Uganda is among African countries grappling with high youth unemployment and limited economic opportunities.
SYMUF, which is under the Bank’s Empowering Novel Agri-Business Led Employment (ENABLE) Youth Program, will use business incubators and financial products to help transform start-up micro, small- and medium enterprises into bankable ventures. It will provide youths with agribusiness and technical skills, including climate-smart agriculture practices, technologies, market networks, and professional mentorship.
Alex Ariho, CEO of the African Agribusiness Incubation Network in Uganda, said the SYMUF project would help young African ‘agripreneurs’ overcome start-up incubation and management challenges. “Working together with all the partners, we are committed to making the SYMUF Project one of the best projects sponsored by the African Development Bank,” he added.
The African Development Bank’s Coordinator for the ENABLE Youth Program, Edson Mpyisi, said: “This program is designed to empower youth at each stage of the agribusiness value chain as ‘agripreneurs’ by harnessing new skills, technologies and financing approaches.”
The bank has invested over $400 million in 15 African countries under the program, he said.
The Bank’s Division Manager for Agribusiness, Damian Ihedioha, said: “the bank believes that Africa’s emerging vibrant wave of entrepreneurship must be supported and nurtured for the continent’s prosperity.”
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