This relationship presents unique opportunities for both institutions, as the Foundation seeks to focus on Youth empowerment and AFRILINK works to promote youth enterprise.
Together, we seek to empower young entrepreneurs to create employment for themselves and in the nation as a whole. AFRILINK is seeking to raise $35,000 USD to secure a match of a similar amount to advance this partnership. We invite you, our partners, to support and help us mobilize these funds.
I am writing to say that our discussions with the Co-op Bank Foundation in Kenya have yielded positive results. We entered a partnership to advance youth entrepreneurs in Kenya. The first phase will involve piloting an Accelerator program with 10 selected entrepreneurs. The second phase will involve scaling up based upon lessons learned in the first phase. Below is a summary of components of partnership:
1. We have jointly completed a proposal to advance the relationship.
2. Established the operational costs to pilot an Accelerator program with 10 entrepreneurs, which will cost $70,000 USD over a one year period.
3. If AFRILINK raises or secures commitments for $35,000 USD, The Co-op Bank Foundation will match those funds.
4. In other words, the Co-op Bank Foundation has committed $35,000 USD but, AFRILINK needs to raise $35,000 USD to secure that funding.
5. The Co-op Bank Foundation will also set up an AFRILINK Revolving SACCO Fund with an initial capital of $50,000 USD that will provide loans to entrepreneurs at a subsidized rate. SACCO is a kind of Credit union that entrepreneurs, board members, friends of AFRILINK could shares to increase the capacity to give more loans. This is big break through because the bank with disburse and manage loans on our behalf.
6. We also incorporated into the agreement, the use of a Business skills Curriculum developed by Social Enterprise Greenhouse of Rhode Island and hosted by Brown University. The SEG consultant will work with AFRILINK Colleagues on the ground to "Kenyanize this Business Skills curriculum". We will use this curriculum to provide business skills training to entrepreneurs in the pilot program.
7. The agreement stipulates that AFRILINK will ensure that 50% of entrepreneurs selected are female and, 30% of enterprises are in the manufacturing sector.
Given this significant progress, I need your counsel and help in securing AFRILINK’s portion of funding needed. AFRILINK Kenya board has launched a campaign to use its network to raise the funds needed, which secured $5,000 USD before I left at the beginning of April 2017.
I need your recommendations on how the US Board might support their efforts. I welcome your suggestions. Thank you.
Founder of AFRILINK