What you need to know:
- MasterCard Foundation to invest Sh30 billion in the Africa Youth Works initiative in Kenya.
- KCB and Equity Bank will contribute over Sh80 billion to the project.
- Project entails extending credit facilities to young entrepreneurs, SMEs and training youth — especially women — on technical and vocational skills.
Over Sh100 billion has been set aside to help five million young people in the country to get jobs and start businesses through public-private partnerships, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
Speaking during the launch of the MasterCard Foundation's Africa Youth Works on Thursday in Nairobi, Mr Kenyatta said that the foundation has invested Sh30 billion in the project that aims to help youth get jobs.
The MasterCard Foundation will work in collaboration with Equity Bank and Kenya Commercial Bank.
“Over the five-year period, MasterCard Foundation will provide Sh10 billion to KCB Group against their contribution of Sh50 billion and Sh7.2 billion to Equity Group against their contribution of Sh32 billion,” Mr Kenyatta said during the ceremony in Nairobi.
He added that the partners will work together to create two million jobs in the next five years.
“When small firms and entrepreneurs access financial services, they obtain the resources they require to grow, expand into new markets and opportunities, create jobs and establish inter-generational wealth,” Mr Kenyatta added.
Ms Reeta Roy, who is the president and chief executive officer of the MasterCard Foundation, said the project will also enhance the use of technology by digitally training young people, especially women.
The event was also attended by Cabinet Secretaries Amina Mohamed (Sports), George Magoha (Education), Joe Mucheru (ICT) and Margaret Kobia (Public Service) as well as Nairobi County Governor Mike Sonko.
Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha who was present for the function revealed that there are 17 million primary and secondary school children in the country. Also present were Cabinet Secretaries Amina Mohamed (Sports, Culture and Heritage), Joe Mucheru (ICT) and Prof Margaret Kobia (Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs).