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Masaka Youth Business Platform

The Masaka Youth Business Platform initiative is pioneered by Swisscontact U-learn phase 2 towards enabling the young people gain knowledge, share their experiences, opportunities, best practices and benefit from the networking opportunities within. The platform encourages inclusive participation of young people to tap into various opportunities that result into employment or sustainable livelihood opportunity. The platform allows the youth to connect to a broader range of people, stakeholders and networks.

Julia Nansubuga(Business Associate) facilitating in the Masaka Business Platform

Key Objectives of the Business Platform were:

  • Access for youthtorelevant knowledge/skills in areas of interest.
  • Access to market; connection to markets for their products and services.
  • Access to locally available skills and technologies as exhibited in the business platform. Exhibition of relevant local techniques and technologies to promote successful practices
  • Peer to peer connections, experience sharing and learning.
  • Access business advisory: to provide business advisory support to one on one or group of participants depending on area of interest.
  • Access to Youth Support Organizations with relevant services or opportunities: to share opportunities relevant to the youth.

Masaka Business Platform Overview: The Masaka Youth Business Platform was held on Thursday 19th September, 2019 from 10.00am at the Mayor’s Hall. The event involved the participation of the various stakeholders both public and private, including the local government which included the DCDO(District Community Development Officer), district production department, local banks and financial service providers, local youth and various local business community players.

The platform took place in mayor’s chambers in Masaka District from 10.00am.

EVENT OUTPUTS:

Attendants 173: Total number of attendees/participants 173 people in attendance

Training Sessions (2)

Business training sessions were conducted.

Financial management best practices by Paul Ssengoba

Business and sales: Serving your way up by Julia Nansubuga

  • The trainings were localized and participatory to ensure that all the youth benefitted from the sessions.
  • 2 key speakers were available after their sessions to provide advisory support although on 3 few youth followed support.

Access to Farm Inputs and farming Technical Advise;

Although we did not have agronomists to provide one on one agricultural advisory support, Bwasandeku mixed farm team provided advise on farming and sold farming books for those interested in especially passion fruit farming.

Access to Information On Opportunities

The Opportunities included:

  • Monitor Farm Clinic-Scheduled for 12th of October, 2019 (95Copies of the clinic were shared with the participants).
  • Bwasandeku Mixed farm visit opportunity an open invitation was made to the participants to visit the farm and practically learn Ag. Skills for various crops and animals.
  • Curad and Swisscontact Agribusiness Challenge opportunity: The Curad and Agribusiness Challenge opportunity was announced for the youth in Agribusiness to participate in the various available categories.

Peer to peer sharing and learning:

Peer to peer sharing and learning during one of the sessions

There was lots of peer to peer learning and sharing especially facilitated by the 2nd speaker who involved use of questions to gauge expectations and understand during her session. The youth also had to interact and practice selling and social skills relevant for them to develop their business management and sales skills.

Exhibition of local technologies and products

There was a variety of exhibitors from different sectors mainly in Agribusiness (including agro-processing) and hospitality. These included:

Local businesses exhibiting during the platform event
  1. Kiwa investments dealing in Mushroom growing
  2. Scotch Bonnet/Habanero growing hot pepper.
  3. Maddo Dairies-Process Yorghut
  1. Bwasandeku Mixed Farm-Growing Passion fruits
  2. Buddu Banana Restoration in Food processing
  3. Yimuka Uganda-production of liquid soap, candles and petroleum jelly
  4. Masaka Integrated Bee Producers Association,(Apiculture-rear bees and produce honey)
  5. Okra Masaka(Noah’s Ark)
  6. Masaka Food Masters(Hospitality)

Access to Financial services through the presence of local financial service providers and banks:

Local finance service providers offering personalized guidance to youths in their tables
  1. Centenary Bank
  2. Pride Microfinance
  3. Masaka Microfinance
  4. Finca Bank
  5. Masaka Micro-support Bank
  6. Jubilee Insurance team

Access to Business Training, Coaching and Advisory Support

  • Amarin Financial Group-Paul Sengoba(Financial Management Best Practices)
  • Nately Creations-Julia Nansubuga(Business and Sales: Serving your way up)

Access to markets/off takers:

The participants were exposed to Agri-produce Buyers

  1. Tropical Dynasty– Hakims shared the market opportunities they had for farmers, including their plans to start buying produce from farmers in Masaka.
  2. Masaka Integrated Bees

The exhibitors of the platform were also able to make sales of their products/services during the platform as per below:

  • Maddo Dairies-8000Ugx
  • Masaka Integrated Bees-25,000Ugx
  • Bwasandeku Mixed Farm-10,000Ugx
  • Buddeu Banana-2000ugx
  • Okra Masaka(Noah’s Ark)-20,000Ugx
  • Masaka Food Masters-288,000Ugx

Local Government Participation The local government presence and participation of the officials who included: DCDO (District Community Development Officer), District Production Officer, District Fishery officer amongst others.

Voluntary Contributions to the Platform by participants: 152,500Ugx

During the platform contribution boxes were made available for participants and well wishers to contribute towards the platform: 152,500Ugx

PLATFORM IMPACT                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

  1. Impact of Platform to a Business:

The platform is expected to deliver great impact to  businesses. It helps them to reach more clients, gain knowledge, attain business growth and eventually increase profits. Specifically, businesses benefit from the platform by

Getting new contacts and referralsThe platform benefits businesses by enabling them to meet potential clients and/or generate referrals which can then follow up to become customers. The platform networking also helps business owners identify opportunities for partnerships, joint ventures, or new areas of expansion for the business.

Staying currentIn an ever-changing business climate it is important to keep up with the target market conditions as well as overall trends in your industry. The platform provides the avenue for a business to stay current.

Problem solvingThe platform often provides solutions to business problems due to the opportunity to access advisory support but also meeting more experienced people in areas of practice.

Sharing knowledge and experienceThe platform is ideal for expanding business owner’s knowledge by taking advantage of the viewpoints and prior experience of others.

Advice-: the platform provides opportunity for the business owner to meet people who will give advice on various matters that would help in improving the business.

Confidence and moraleMost business people are optimistic and positive. Regularly associating with such people can be a great morale boost, particularly in the difficult early phases of a new business. This allow positive influence.

Opportunities: The platform provides for various opportunities including: information, markets, partnership, client leads, joint ventures among others.

Raising business profile: the platform provides opportunities for the business to get noticed and be visible. This helps build a reputation for the business.

  1. Platform Impact on Inclusion:

The platform allows inclusive access to skills, networks and information, especially for the vulnerable youth in rural communities who are largely excluded hence making it easier for them to transform socially and economically to overcome poverty.

The platform approach of using both digital and physical models helps reduce “digital divides” between technology-empowered and technology-excluded communities, since they will be able to connect to the various opportunities during the platform meet-ups.

The platform strengthens youth’s participation in the economic development and working capacity hence making them a productive members of the community. This helps in reducing unemployment, poverty, people’s lack of prospects and deprivation ensuring social security and basic services.

  1. PPP-Public-Private Partnerships to Promote Community Development

Public-private partnerships (PPPs) have become a vehicle to deliver products and services to the community. The physical platform allows the public administration to play a major role in partnerships establishing and operating with different community

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