Determinants of effective utilization of youth enterprise development fund, a case of Bahari constituency Kilifi county, Kenya
The Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF) was envisaged in June 2006 by the government as a tactical progress towards arresting joblessness which is virtually a youth problem. The loan targets all forms of youth owned enterprises whether owned individually, as a company, in groups, in cooperatives or any other legal forms of business ownership. The purpose of the study was to establish the determinants influencing effective utilization of youth fund in Bahari constituency, Kilifi County. The specific objectives were to assess the influence of entrepreneurial training; level of education; entrepreneurial experience and funding requirements on effective utilization of youth enterprise development fund. Research has been done on YEDF by many researchers but no one has concentrated on the specific variables on effective utilization of the YEDF, hence the basis of the research. In addition to that since inception of the YEDF in 2007, only 40 groups have benefited from the funds. From the findings a positive relationship between getting business updates and those who get mentorship monthly, more educated people seek more information on business and hence it influences effective utilization of the fund as 28 out of the 40 people examined thought that education increases repayment capacity of borrowers. Entrepreneurial experience influences the youth personality and overall impact on utilization of youth fund. Bahari Constituency was the geographical scope of the study, where the target population was youth groups who have benefited from YEDF. This study was conducted using a descriptive survey design on a sample of 40 youths from 40 registered youth groups in the constituency. In data collection, a structured questionnaire was developed and utilized in this study. The preference for a questionnaire for use was based on the fact that respondents were able to complete them without help, anonymously, and it is cheaper and quicker than other methods while reaching out to larger sample (Bryman, 2008; Cohen et al., 2007). The questionnaire had both open and close ended items for collection of primary data. Quantitative data was analyzed by descriptive statistics using Excel statistics (XLSTA T)while qualitative data was analyzed using content analysis. From the study it was found out that, level of education, entrepreneurship training and experience in business influence on the effectiveness and utilization of YEDF in Bahari constituency. The study is hoped to inform government policy with regard to designing changes to streamline the youth Development Fund management to enhance more participation from the youths. It will help the youth Development Fund project managers in policy formulation for development projects; by incorporating all the stakeholders towards achieving the target outcome in projects. The findings are also likely to benefit the youth in findings ways to own the youth Development Fund projects by enhancing more participation. Based on these findings, the researcher recommended Youth employment interventions should increasingly target the enhancement and promotion of the youth entrepreneurial potential.