The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) and the Red Cross have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to empower 200 entrepreneurs from Nigeria’s North East and Niger Delta regions.
The partnership aims to holistically address the economic plight of communities affected by armed conflict or violence, through innovative interventions, TEF, which recently opened applications for its latest annual entrepreneurship programme, said.
This new initiative is complementary to the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme, with selected entrepreneurs from the two regions to receive funding of up to US$5,000 each, from a separate endowment of US$1,000,000, as non-returnable seed capital to implement their business ideas, after undergoing business training and mentoring.
The beneficiaries of the additional programme will be announced alongside the successful 1,000 entrepreneurs in the fourth cycle of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme, on March 22.
“This is the dawn of a new era – a new way of doing things in International development. Only African entrepreneurs can truly tackle the endemic poverty, huge unemployment and persistent insecurity we see across the continent today,” TEF said.
“We know that when people are positively engaged – busy producing goods and services, creating jobs and generating cash flow, they do not have the time to take up guns. So, we at the Tony Elumelu Foundation have declared war against poverty, and entrepreneurship is our primary weapon.”