Leroy Dzenga Herald Correspondent
Young entrepreneurs should make the most of the loan facilities being offered by the National Youth Empower Bank, a Government official has said.
Speaking at Total Zimbabwe’s Start Upper of the year awards in Harare recently, Principal Director in the Ministry of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Dr Benson Dube said there was still a lot of money lying idle at the youth bank.
“In 2018, the Government established a youth-focused financial institution Empower Bank in order to enable lending and financial support to youth businesses and projects. To-date, Empower Bank has distributed more than 600 loans for youth businesses and projects across the country and the money is still in abundance for more youths to apply such loans. The money is for you our youths, come and get it. Don’t shy away it is your money,” he said.
“The Government of Zimbabwe has adopted a pro-youth agenda to empower and capacitate our youth in diverse economic sectors.
“According to the 2012 census, Zimbabwe has a young population. Out of 13,1 million people in this country, 77 percent of them are below the age of 35,” said Dr Dube.
“This statistic alone demanded our immediate intervention towards capacity building, financial inclusion, literacy and life skills among the youth.”
A number of youths made rich pickings on the day after their ideas earned them capital for their projects.
Zvishavane-based Sadam Mapundu walked away with US$17 500 for his Choto Virtual Energy idea, which provides a cheap way for people who are not on the traditional power grid to charge their phones.
The second runner-up was Farai Musendo, who walked away with $10 500 for his idea which converts waste plastic into diesel.
Total made an undertaking to continue helping Zimbabwean youths with bright idea on an annual basis.