On August 5th, the Youth Entrepreneurship Project interns held CEED's first business competition at the renowned Gulu District Hall and it was a huge success!

 

Six ambitious youth groups presented their business plans to prominent judges from the community, to compete for grants as start-up capital for their ventures.

 

Their journeys began in early June 2017. From over 75 applications received, 15 youth groups were short-listed to be interviewed. These six groups were then selected to attend 4-days of intensive entrepreneurship trainings in July, to build on their business plans for the competition that took place this past Saturday.

 

The groups received valuable feedback and mentorship from the following distinguished judges:

Kipwola Anne, Managing Director of Okado Investments Ltd.

Otto Alphonse, Managing Director of Binen Restaurant Gulu

Paul Mutanga, an entrepreneur by birth and founder of O’Cafe Gulu.

 

After a rigorous day of pitching and careful evaluation, three youth groups received grants of 2 million Ugandan shillings each. The winning teams will also become CEED beneficiaries for one year, where they will receive mentorship, business trainings and continuous support from our organization.

 

Meet the winners!

Dreams Fashion and Design is a group of young women who strive to revolutionize gender equality and empower artists through fashion. Their target niche includes producing cutting edge clothes for artists, musicians and actors. In addition, the youth group will donate a portion of their funds to the Girls For Change project, which seeks to change the lives of victims of sexual abuse. Not only are these women philanthropists and change agents, they are creators and entrepreneurs, seeking to bridge modern styles with traditional African design.

“It’s a difference and uniqueness that we want to promote.”

 

The Rhino Youth Empowerment Initiative, are the founders of the soon-to-be Rhino Youth Bakery in Gulu. This particular bakery will have a focus on engaging youth within the community with the practice of baking, in efforts to combat the adversity of large unemployment rates in Uganda. By their second year in business, they hope to start a baking apprenticeship program for underprivileged youth in Gulu. In addition to producing unique and delicious baked goods to sell at their shop, these talented youth will be offering catering services for events in Gulu.

 

“Our vision is to be the friendliest, preferred choice for confectioneries and youth apprenticeship in Gulu.”

 

Finally, the Waloko-Kwo is a business group working to develop briquette charcoal as a staple renewable energy source in northern Uganda. Briquette charcoal is an environmentally friendly alternative fuel source that produces less smoke and more heat in comparison to firewood and wood charcoal. Not only that, it’s also 40% more efficient than previously used sources, resulting in higher household savings. In addition to being dedicated to environmental sustainability, Waloko-Kwo hopes that the development of this innovative technology will create jobs for youth.

“Our biggest hope is to keep identifying opportunities and utilizing them.”

 

 

Final Remarks

 

Congratulations to the top three winners as well as all the inspiring youth groups who participated in our trainings this summer! All of the ventures presented were fantastic and we encourage these groups to continue pursuing their passions and become change agents within their communities.

 

CEED would like to thank Kipwola Anne, Otto Alphonse and Paul Mutanga, for giving their time to our event and for providing valuable feedback to all the participating groups. We would also like to thank all the those who donated and attended our fundraiser events in Montreal for allowing this event to be realized.

 

CEED would also like to give a round of applause to our Youth Entrepreneurship interns and our counterpart, CEED Uganda, for organizing a successful and innovative event.

 

 

Follow @CEED Concordia and @CEED Uganda on Facebook for more updates about our projects in Uganda.

 

Want to get involved or have any questions? Send an email to events@ceedconcordia.org and we’ll be happy to get back to you as soon as we can!