Mastercard invites female entrepreneurs to apply for the Junior Achievement South Africa Youth Enterprise Development Programme to turn their entrepreneurial dreams into reality.
The programme is earmarked to empower young females to pursue their entrepreneurial vision and it is open to unemployed or self-employed out-of-school women, aged between 18 and 35 years old.
The 20-week entrepreneurial and financial literacy programme will select 260 applicants to take part in the programme that commences at community centres around Gauteng, Western Cape and Limpopo in mid-February.
Budding entrepreneurs and those wanting to grow their business will learn about business theory, market research, financial and business management, sales and marketing, in theoretical and practical sessions held two afternoons a week.
Lessons in basic computer literacy will also be provided, according to Nelly Mofokeng, managing director at Junior Achievement South Africa.
Mofokeng said graduates from the programme receive an NQF level 4 services Seta accredited Youth Enterprise Development certificate, an Intel Learn easy steps digital literacy certificate, and an opportunity to participate in a six-month mentorship programme, which will provide them with additional business support while they start formal enterprises.
“The importance of developing an entrepreneurship culture and empowering South Africa’s youth is pivotal in helping young people towards economic and financial independence,” said Mofokeng.
According to the latest Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs, Mofokeng said women account for only 19,1 per cent of business owners in South Africa.
Mark Elliott, division president for Mastercard Southern Africa, said women have a low rate of entrepreneurial activity, with only seven per cent of
working-age women in the labour force engaged in early-stage entrepreneurial activities compared to 11,6 per cent for men.
“Helping women entrepreneurs to realise their business ideas and enabling them to participate in the economy are the keys to growth and prosperity in South Africa.
“We’re supporting this initiative because of its proven success in empowering young women with the fundamental skills to develop their ideas into sustainable businesses,” said Elliot.
In Gauteng, the programme is being run in Ivory Park Fire Station at Riendzo Development Centre.
Details: Ishmael Sephiri 083 660 2119 or 011 051 8801.