Rural Youth Agribusiness Development Through Business Mentorship

CoELIB-Egerton University and Demand Link Business Solutions have been mentoring the 163 youth group beneficiaries of the Vijabiz project. Many youth groups have enhanced their entrepreneurial skills, identified niche markets and products and created jobs for themselves and other youths. The mentorship has also resulted in specific outcomes for some youth groups particularly direct access to finance, business growth and efficient financial management. As this is a continuous process, more specific outcomes will be captured using the dynamic monitoring and evaluation tool developed for that purpose. Demand Link Business Solutions handles 111 groups (49 in Kilifi and 62 in Nakuru counties) while CoELIB mentors the remaining 52 groups in Naruku. Two mentorship sessions are conducted per youth group every month. Mentors have engaged the groups on many issues including personal development, listening skills, leadership, group dynamics, market and marketing strategies, product development, prudent financial management and governance structures. Mentors share their experiences with mentees within the groups to grow other members and to grow their businesses. Through various tools developed for the mentorship, mentors explain and demonstrate to the mentees their specific roles and responsibilities for successful businesses. The youth are mentored to experience their positions as potential job providers and improve their understanding of their groups’ business outcomes. Read more on Stories from the Vijabiz project