Monday, July 22, 2024

Njie ‘Charakh’ Advocates for Women’s Empowerment, Rejects Notions of Laziness

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By: Dawda Baldeh

The Gambia is grappling with a high rate of youth unemployment, often attributed to a lack of job opportunities. However, a few individuals are striving hard to change the status quo through entrepreneurship. Among them is Njie Charakh, the CEO of Njie Charakh World Market, who is a leading entrepreneur in the country. Like many Gambians, Njie has faced challenges in establishing his business.

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In an interview with The Fatu Network, he emphasized the importance of empowering women and youth, dismissing the idea of laziness among Gambian youth due to inadequate financial support and mentorship. “The youth are not lazy, especially women; they lack the proper support and mentorship,” he said.

Through his entrepreneurial tutorials and local business promotion, Njie provides resources for young entrepreneurs at his shop. “I have trained many young entrepreneurs in this country who have established their businesses. Most of the products in my shop are homemade by young Gambian women,” he explained.

He commended women for leading this initiative and changing the narrative. Njie highlighted the need for proper support and mentorship for youth to succeed. His brand, ‘Njie Charakh World Market,’ supports many young entrepreneurs, particularly women, by providing materials for sale and profit. Njie imports various products to assist women and youth in starting their businesses and runs skill training centers nationwide.

While The Gambia has more female entrepreneurs than male, both face similar challenges such as a lack of capital. Njie shared success stories of women who became job creators after training at his centers. He emphasized the potential of Gambian women to contribute to the country’s development if adequately supported. “I know how hardworking women and youths are. I am urging my fellow Gambians to support each other. That’s why whenever I am traveling outside the country, I take along homemade products to advertise them to other countries so that we can also export,” Njie said.

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Njie praised the hard work and integrity of women entrepreneurs, highlighting their timely repayment of debts without any need for guarantees. He suggested empowering women by granting joint property rights and eliminating collateral requirements to address the challenges they face in starting businesses. Njie believed that training programs for women entrepreneurs should focus on cultivating proactive behaviors rather than just teaching basic business skills.

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