Standard Chartered Bank through the Standard Chartered Foundation donated Shs750 million to support 600 Youth in Agribusiness as part of the ‘Futuremakers programme’.
The donation is earmarked to support micro, small and medium agri-businesses in Northern Uganda districts of Lira and Nebbi that have been negatively impacted by the economic downturn caused by the pandemic and further escalated by the slow recovery process that has had far reaching effects for vulnerable groups like; women, refugees and persons with disabilities.
The programme will be implemented by its NGO partners; ICCO Cooperation and Youth Business International through ‘High Flyer program’.
‘High Flyer program’ will provide a holistic package of support that will include; entrepreneurship, business development and digital marketing skills training, linkages to finance and new markets, mentorship and recovery cash grants to facilitate the efficiency and sustainability of their businesses. 100 of the most vulnerable youths will receive cash grants worth Shs2 million each to revive their businesses.
Albert Saltson, the Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bank Uganda in his remarks said; “Our donation today through the Standard Chartered foundation is a continuation of our #Covid-19 emergency relief measures that we embarked on last year that culminated into the donation of Shs1.6 billion through over eight NGOs to support various communities navigate and stay afloat during the pandemic.”
“We have stepped up to go beyond banking. We have a track record of a long history of supporting and empowering the communities in Uganda for the 109 years we have been in existence in Uganda. This attests to our brand promise “Here for good” and our values that indeed we are #BetterTogether.” he said
He said there has never been a better time for different players to come together not only to jointly fight against the #Covid-19 pandemic but to also seed sustainable projects that will secure the future of the youth and open social and economic opportunities including job creation.
Petra Van Haren Country Manager – ICCO Uganda said; “ICCO is a Dutch international organization with a vision of empowering people that build sustainable livelihoods within a society that upholds their rights. Through interventions that focus on blending finance, climate resilient food systems, new technologies and youth entrepreneurship, we seek to strengthen food and nutrition security and economic empowerment for smallholder farmers and SMEs.”
In partnership with YBI, our High Flyers program has to date been able to facilitate the transition of over 500 youth start-ups in Northern Uganda from micro enterprises to small businesses through targeted mentorship and training.
“We are excited about the partnership with the Standard Chartered Foundation as it will boost our program capacity to further strengthen the resilience of young entrepreneurs with critical adjustment skills that can contribute to economic recovery in Northern Uganda after the #Covid-19 pandemic.” she said
Minister of Agriculture, animal industry and Fisheries Vincent Ssempijja, said; “I commend the efforts of Standard Chartered Bank, ICCO Uganda and YBI for the timely support towards the youth who are grappling with the devastating impact of the pandemic and for supplementing the Government of Uganda efforts by investing in youth programme that will tackle inequality and promote greater economic inclusion for young entrepreneurs in Nebbi and Lira.”
“I appeal to the beneficiaries to put the skills and recovery cash grants they will receive to good use. Be good stewards and ensure your impact in your districts is far-reaching and is felt for the good of the entire community and our country.”