Tanzania Entrepreneurship and Competitive Council (TECC), Outreach and Promotional Manager, Abdul Juma said in Dar es Salaam yesterday that the training program will impart skills and knowledge in youth to also be competitive in the labour market when vocational and technical skills are lacking.
“This entrepreneurship training for youths will be a stepping stone for them in the fight against unemployment while broadening their knowledge on life skills which are essential in the process of industrialization,” Juma said.
Implemented jointly by TECC in collaboration with International Youths Foundation, MasterCard Foundation, Small Industries Development Organization and Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA), among others, the program is now entering its fifth phase.
“The fifth phase of the VIA Pathways to Work Program has officially started on the first day of August this year which paves the way for youths to have access of entrepreneurship and industrialization training,” the TECC Outreach and Promotional Manager noted.
Youths who qualify for the program are those based in Dar es Salaam, Dodoma, Pwani and Mtwara regions. Among other things, the youths are trained in business management basics, mentoring and growing their capital through loan acquisition from financial institutions.
The training will take place for six weeks and involves theory in tentative classrooms and practically through business mentoring for a period of 12 months. In order to enrol for the program, youths should collect forms at municipal and district council offices before the deadline on 24 August.
Head of Operations and Marketing at the Presidential Trust Fund, John Mwakasege said his institution has been collaborating with TECC for a long time by issuing soft loans to young entrepreneurs as part of efforts to wean the group from abject poverty and unemployment.
“Since 2015, the PTF has already dished out 840m/- to 1,100 youths countrywide,” Mwakasege noted while urging youths to make use of the fund to grow their businesses and tame poverty.
He said the country has a vest potential of opportunities which many youth don’t seize to become successful and play a key role in developing the country. “Awareness is lacking among us because the fund has so far disbursed over 4.4b/- in loans but only 840m/- went to youths,” the Head of Operations and Marketing at PTF noted.
He invited youths who have graduated from the past VIA Pathway to Work Program to approach the PTF and get loans and start their own small industries or businesses instead of sitting idle waiting for employment.
A Manager from SIDO, Mac Donald Maganga pledged to continue working closely with TECC in the process of stimulating entrepreneurship spirit among young people and creating a conducive environment for them to participate in the industrialization process.
“In this program, SIDO will provide technical training to young people so that they can have skills and knowledge required to start small industries,” Maganga noted.
One of the beneficiaries of the program who is Atasha Company Limited Director, Asha Kasiliwa said after completing her training course, she decided to start her own business which also employs others.
“This program gave the right skills and knowledge which enabled me to start my own business with financial disciplines, marketing confidence and entrepreneurship skills to grow the business,” Kasiliwa noted.