The Youth Enterprise Development and the Uwezo Funds:a Review of Their Perfomance in Nyeri County
Youth entrepreneurship has a greater potential to aid the achievement of MDG goal no.8. According to Chigunta (2002), youth entrepreneurship in many countries faces numerous challenges. These include, poor access to finance, market, entrepreneurship education and business development services for the start-ups by young people in high-income and developing countries. This study sought to review the Performance of the Youth Enterprise Development and the Uwezo Funds in Mathira Sub County in Nyeri county. The target population was all youth groups who had benefitted from either of the Funds in Mathira Sub-County. Data was collected from 64 entrepreneurs using self–administered questionnaires, interview guide and direct observation, and they were analyzed descriptively using inferential statistics and presented using tables and figures. The results showed a strong positive correlation between performance and entrepreneurship training with correlation coefficient (0.762), and access to credit (0.650). There was weak positive correlation between performance after funding and the level of marketing facilitation with correlation coefficients (0.410), and business support services (0.437). The performance was therefore influenced by entrepreneurship training, access to credit, marketing facilitation and business support services. The study concluded that groups had shown quite some significant improvement in their businesses after funding and entrepreneurship training but there was a gap in the provision of business support services and marketing facilitation. This study recommends a need for monitoring and evaluation of the youth run entities to ensure the funds are used in the right way. Both YEDF and Uwezo Funds need to increase the amount advanced to the groups, introduce and increase the individual funding for YEDF, reduce the cumbersome procedures, introduce a youth business network for better marketing of their products and offer intensive business support services.
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