By: Dawda Baldeh
The Global Youth Innovation Network (GYIN) has announced that their 2023 rural youth award will feature 10 best-performing migrant returnees, women, and youth start-up businesses, and each winner will pocket home €1000.
GYIN was registered in 2012 and has registered significant achievements over the years.
Speaking to journalists at a press conference, Edrissa Njie, the Executive Director of the GYIN Gambia Chapter, said the award is geared towards recognizing and celebrating the achievements of young people working in rural areas.
“Ten (10) best-performing rural youth returnees in the Agribusinesses will be provided with in-kind support worth €1000 for each winner to enhance their businesses,” the organizers said.
According to officials, GYIN focuses on rural development by providing entrepreneurship training, business advisory services, mentoring, and coaching to young people in rural communities.
“Our activities are geared towards creating jobs by helping young entrepreneurs to become successful in their businesses through our various programs,” Njie explained.
The rural youths award’s first edition started in 2017. However, the ceremony was not held in 2021 and 2022 due to some issues, the organizers said.
This year’s award is targeting ten (10) best-performing migrant returnees in rural Gambia.
According to Mr. Njie, they will be supporting rural farmers who are struggling to buy fertilizers due to their financial incapability.
He added that this year’s award is the biggest in terms of price.
However, the organizers said each awardee is entitled to win an award once.
“We will also be supporting young rural farmers with organic fertilizers that are produced by our young entrepreneurs,” he noted.
Organizers said they will supply organic fertilizers to rural farmers as part of their programs.
“We will address the challenges by promoting agribusinesses and generating income and employment for returnees, women, and youth. At GYIN Gambia we focus on rural development.
Our programs are very unique because when you talk about the rural youth awards, we are the only ones doing it,” he added.
Among the challenges, the organization said is facing them is making sure the products produced by the rural youth are distributed to markets and supermarkets as most people prefer goods imported from other countries.
Other speakers include Sarjo Jarju, the chairperson of the rural youth award who also spoke on the significance of the award.
“The award will motivate the rural youth who are into agribusinesses. We do this annually and give them the necessary support,” he said.
The award is part of GYIN Gambia’s eight-month-long project “Foster Agribusiness and Entrepreneurship Opportunities for Returnees and Host Communities in Rural Areas” funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft for Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).