HARAMBE NIGERIA SET TO HELP YOUNG AGRI-ENTREPRENEURS

After two years of innovative projects and events to put a spotlight on
Agriculture in Nigeria , especially amongst young people, Harambe Nigeria
, has moved on to a new level of engagement: providing young
agri-entrepreneurs with the opportunities to build and expand their
ventures.

Part of the global Harambe Endeavour Alliance, Harambe Nigeria’s goal is
to enable Nigerian youth develop innovative solutions in Nigeria ’s
agricultural sector by providing them with the necessary tools, network
and exposure that will enable them translate their ideas into actions.

Through this, Harambe Nigeria is confident it will inspire a new
generation of Nigerian entrepreneurs who will lead innovation in the
agricultural sector and in turn help bring diversity to Nigeria ‘s
economy.

For this next phase of the project, the organization has designed an
agricultural business plan competition for young people between the ages
of 21 and 35.

“What we are looking for are Innovative and sustainable agro business
ideas in two categories,” said Tola Sunmonu, its President. “Budding
entrepreneurs; which are those with nothing established expect perhaps a
bright idea and a pen, and then established entrepreneurs, which would be
those who have an agrobusiness that has been operating for a maximum of 18
months.”

Applications will be received starting from the month of April and will
contain three separate phases. The first phase will involve the submission
of a resume and an entry form available on
www.hendeavor.org/content/bgroups/nigeria.php or at the Center for
Entrepreneurial Development Services, Victoria Island; the Fate Foundation
Office, Ijora; Value Frontier Ikeja, The Future Project in Surulere and
LEAP Africa in Lekki Phase 1. Deadline for this is May 31.

The second phase will involve the submission of a full business plan, and
in the final phase, the semifinalists will have the opportunity to present
their ideas to a panel of judges and after a series of interviews the
winners will be selected. Deadline for this is August 6.

“We want to ensure that Nigeria does not miss a beat on its journey
towards development,” said Obinna Ukwuanim, the Head of Communications.
“Harambe Nigeria is launching this competition to hopefully identify the
fertile future leaders and lavishly capitalize on their talent. The first
step in achieving an aspiration is always the first step. Once those
endowed with leadership are acknowledged and properly equipped to realize
their ideas, the limit of impact is then beyond any man’s foresight. But
first, great minds must be given a chance.”

In order to ensure that the winning ideas are successful implemented and
sustained, Harambe Nigeria will be giving up to 7.5 million naira in cash
and training.

The trainings will be courtesy of renowned institutions such as the Centre
for Entrepreneurial Development Services (EDS) at the Pan African
University and the Fate Foundation. The winning entrepreneurs will also
receive extensive follow up services provided by Harambe Nigeria to ensure
that they receive ample support as they implement their winning solutions.

The winners of the competition will be unveiled during this year’s
symposium where they will receive significant media attention and an
opportunity to present their winning ideas to potential investors. They
will also be given a full feature in the Harambe Newsletter and will be
Harambe Ambassadors for a year.

“Farming is not a usually attractive sector mostly because only lip
service is paid to it, but what we have done in the past two years is to
let young Nigerians in these important field know that people are watching
them and are ready to support with knowledge, skills, opportunity for
growth and finance,” Ms. Sunmonu said. “This has always been part of our
middle-term plans, and it’s the next natural progression. Many of these
young entrepreneurs need practical support and we are excited that we are
able to provide it.”

Harambe Nigeria , in partnership with the Dangote Group, Zenith Bank,
Notore, and Shell Nigeria, has hosted two Youth Conferences in Lagos . The
overwhelming response from young and enterprising students in attendance
prompted Harambe Nigeria to establish the Harambe Incubator for
Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development (HISARD).

The incubator at the Obafemi Awolowo University , Ile-Ife consists of 10
students, and their goal is to create innovative solutions ot the
agricultural problems facing the farming communitities in Orile Owu and
Wakajaiye. They have completed a successful phase of needs assessment and
are in the process of implementation of an on-campus business that will
add value to the farmers’ palm oil and garri.

For any questions, applicants can email info@harambenigeria.org.

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