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The NextGen Agripreneur Apprenticeship: An Immersive Incubation Program for Job Creation

The program will link agricultural businesses with motivated youth eager to build technical skills and exploit opportunities in agriculture.

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EXPLAIN YOUR IDEA

The NextGen Agripreneur boot camp and apprenticeship program will connect leading agricultural businesses with motivated youth keen to invest their energy in building agricultural businesses. The skills of participants will be build through immersion and practice, first through a one-month boot camp where a number of businesses share their experiences operating in the sector. At the end of the boot camp, participants are assessed in their understanding of the businesses and ability to identify opportunities that exist therein with a view to develop ‘bankable’ business ideas. Selected participants complete an apprenticeship and are equipped with the necessary skills to develop and operate viable businesses or get employment. The apprentices are encouraged to develop business ideas based on their experiences. The incubating facility (PICO-EA) then works with the apprentices to develop the business idea further and provides initial seed funding to set up the business. It also provides continuous administrative support as well as mentoring and training opportunities in business leadership and management to ensure that the start-up venture succeeds. This program resolves the huge skills and financing gap in the agriculture sector that denies youth employment opportunities. Catalyzing the emergence of youth led businesses and mentoring of a new breed of tech savvy entrepreneurs, who can respond to market demands and available opportunities, will create much needed employment.

WHO BENEFITS?

The program will promote a symbiotic relationship where businesses access a pool of motivated potential workforce or future service providers while the youth learn invaluable technical skills to get them job- or business-ready. An incubating entity will link the selected youth to the best matched businesses for apprenticeship while also equipping them with leadership and business skills as a pathway to success. The program has the potential to directly impact between 250 to 600 youth yearly.

TELL US MORE ABOUT YOU

PICO-Eastern Africa (PICO-EA) is a not-for-profit organization based in Nairobi, but working across Africa, supporting institutional development in Agriculture and Rural Development. We support organizations in their efforts to bring about change and innovation for sustainable development.

WHERE WILL YOUR IDEA BE IMPLEMENTED?

  • Kenya
  • Uganda

EXPERIENCE IN IMPLEMENTATION COUNTRY(IES)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

EXPERTISE IN SECTOR

  • I’ve worked in a sector related to my idea for over a year
  • Problem

Agriculture is the largest source of employment in East Africa, and contributes the largest share of GDP for all East African economies. However, it is also one of the most underperforming and under-exploited sectors. Women and youth are often excluded from most agricultural value chains because of many entry barriers such as limited access to land, lack of capital and poor knowledge of available opportunities.

Large pools of youth could obtain gainful employment were they to be involved in higher level value chain activities. Catalyzing the emergence of youth-led small businesses and micro-enterprises and associated mentoring of a new breed of tech savvy entrepreneurs, to understand and respond to market demands and available opportunities, would greatly improve performance of these value chains and at the same time create the much needed employment.

  • Proposed Solution

The NextGen Agripreneur boot camp and apprenticeship program will connect leading agricultural businesses with motivated youth keen to invest their time and resources in building agricultural businesses. The apprenticeship will build the skills of participants through immersion and practice, much in the same way that a vocational institution would. By the end of the apprenticeship, it is expected that the participants would be equipped with the necessary skills to develop and operate viable businesses.

The program will promote a symbiotic relationship where businesses get access to a pool of motivated potential workforce or future service providers while the youth learn invaluable technical skills useful for employment or running an agricultural business. An incubating entity will link the selected youth to the best matched businesses for apprenticeship while also equipping them with leadership and business skills as a pathway to success.

  • Approach

Participants are invited to a one-month boot camp where a number of businesses share their experiences operating in the sector. This is an intensive immersion activity where the youth undertake practical lessons, learn the A – Z about the enterprise and are exposed to scenarios, experiences and challenges that have been experienced by the businesses. Through a case - study role playing format, they are invited to solve actual challenges that a business has actually faced. At the end of the boot camp, participants complete an assessment to evaluate their understanding of the businesses, their decision making process and ability to identify opportunities that exist in the highlighted business areas with a view of developing ‘bankable’ business ideas. 

Evaluation based on specific criteria is then used to select a subset of participants who are invited for apprenticeship at participating businesses. The incubating facility then works with the apprentices to develop the business idea further and provides initial seed funding to set up the business.  It also provides continuous administrative support as well as mentoring and training opportunities in business leadership and management to ensure that the start-up venture succeeds. The support is slowly weaned off and completely withdrawn as the business stabilizes. In this way, a network of youth-led businesses employing many other youth would emerge, while also ensuring a large pool of technically competent youth is available for employment by existing businesses.

  • Scope

In its inception, it is anticipated that a pilot program will be set up in one of the three East African countries (Kenya, Uganda or Rwanda) given their large, vibrant and business-motivated youth populations. In the selected country, a total of 4 cohorts will be selected, and 100 apprenticeship positions made available per year. From these, 15 fundable business ideas will be selected for seed funding. Each apprentice is expected to build a business with high impact for youth involvement. The pilot phase is expected to last 3 years (two rounds of selection), at which point a review will be undertaken to assess the impact of the program on business development and employment creation and to determine how the model can be scaled up and out.

  • Outcomes and impact

It is envisaged that a minimum of 200 youth will participate in the boot camp every year. Of these, 100 will be trained on technical skills in various agricultural value chains. This will tremendously improve the pool of employable youth who are job-ready. The 15 businesses that will be supported each year will be those that have potential for employing between 10 to 30 youth. The program thus has the potential to directly impact between 250 to 600 youth every year once the funded businesses become operational.  The spill-over effects will ensure a larger number of households benefit from the program. In addition to creating employment for the youth, the program will also reduce the scarcity of skilled labor for the agricultural sector and spark interest of youth in agricultural value chains.

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Attachments (5)

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Page 4 of the user experience map

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Page 3 of the user experience map

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Page 2 of the user experience map

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Page one of the user experience map

PICO_USER EXPERIENCE MAP.pdf

THis is the user experience map, giving a visual representation of the idea.

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Great to have you onboard! We notice your post is currently unpublished. Was this your intention? We'd love to have it included on the challenge. If you decide you'd like it included, you can publish it by hitting the Publish Entry up there at the top of your post. Or update it first by hitting the Edit Contribution button. Looking forward to seeing more of you on conversations across this challenge…

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I am having problems uploading the pdf files. Can I send by email so that I can post the idea??

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PICO-EA - If you send to amplify@ideo.com we can post the PDF files for you. Please provide the link to your idea in the e-mail. Thank you for your participation!