Factors Influencing Accessibility To Youth Enterprise Development Fund Loans By Youth Groups In Msambweni District, Kwale County, Kenya
The purpose of this study was to establish the factors that influence the accessibility of Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF) loans by youth in Msambweni District. The study objectives were to investigate how profitability of youth enterprises, effective management of the youth enterprises and effective communication influences accessibility of YEDF loans in Msambweni District. The target population for this study was the 220 registered youth groups, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (Msambweni) officers, YEDF officers and the financial intermediaries’ officials. The sample size comprised of 67 randomly selected youth groups, the Youth Development Officer, YEDF officer, and 6 financial intermediaries officials. The research used questionnaires as the main research instrument. The collected data was tabulated and analyzed using descriptive statistics and SPSS software. The study revealed that there were different economic activities that the youth groups engaged in. The study revealed that most of the youth groups did not apply for the youth enterprise development fund loan since they were discouraged by the loan administration process and also other new groups had not learnt about the youth fund. It also revealed 49.3% of the respondents noted that the time taken to access such loan was 4-6months. The study established that 80.6% of the youth group members had professional skills and 71.3% of them said there was need for the group to get training on entrepreneurship/ business management. The most popular means of communication between the youth groups and youth department was mobile telephone because the feedback was immediate. The main challenges were delay in disbursing the loans and strict requirements (proposal, registration, operation bank account and the amount was too little). The study established that the current Government Policy did not influence the accessibility of YEDF since group business proposal matters the most and the revolving fund was not adequate for all youth groups. The following conclusions were drawn. The youth were involved in different economic activities and they had been trained and equipped with skills to enhance growth and repayment of funds given. The youth groups did access funds although not from the YEDF but from the financial intermediaries. The main challenge affecting access to the YEDF was disbursement of loans. The Government Policies did not influence the accessibility of YEDF since group business proposal matter most. The following recommendations were drawn; the youth should be equipped with skills and training on activities to enhance their ability to pay loans. The YEDF should encourage the youth to get loans from them by easing the administration process to be followed. The loan should not take too long to be disbursed. Youth should be equipped with entrepreneurial skills and business management skills to help them make informed decisions on the businesses that are viable for their groups. Both open and closed communication would assist the group to operate effectively. The government to change the policy on the need for the business proposal to visiting sites of the youth group business and make recommendations whether the business is viable for a loan or not. A check on the books of accounts for the youth groups could also be helpful when making such decisions. The suggestions for further research should be carried out to establish factors that influence the accessibility to the youth enterprise development fund loans by the youth groups in the Kenya.