KIC Women’s Bootcamp Inspires Young Women 

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Kic Ubids Women S Bootcamp
Kic Ubids Women S Bootcamp

The Kosmos Innovation Center (KIC), through its women’s entrepreneurship boot camp, has ignited passion and interest among young women to venture into the creation of businesses along the agricultural value chain.

At the KIC Women’s Bootcamp held at the SDD University of Business and Integrated Development Studies (UBIDS) over the weekend, hundreds of young women including students of the university were psyched to be agripreneurial through riveting speeches and panel discussions covering entrepreneurship, agribusiness opportunities, leadership and organizational management.

Speaking at the boot camp, Prof Stanley Dary, Director of the Directorate of Community Outreach and Business Incubation and Faculty Advisor of the KIC Agritech Challenge, SDD UBIDS, said it was to motivate women to take up opportunities in the entrepreneurial space, particularly in agriculture to bridge the gap that exists within the entrepreneurship ecosystem.

Kic Agritech Challenge
Kic Agritech Challenge

“There’s a gap in the entrepreneurial space and we want to bridge that gap, so we want to develop the capacities of young women, give them skills, and motivate them to take up opportunities within the entrepreneurial space,” he said.

He said the focus was on agriculture because there were numerous opportunities within the space that were left untapped largely because agriculture had not been branded so well over the years.

He added that it was expected of the young women to become innovative and look beyond being employed to creating businesses of their own and also employing others.

Prof Dary also encouraged the young women to apply to the KIC Agritech Challenge competition which provides capacity building and seed funding for young people to start their businesses.

Madam Maria Johana Yuorpor, an entrepreneur and business consultant, said there were enormous opportunities in the agricultural sector and encouraged young women to change their mindset towards agriculture.

She urged them to galvanize the spirit of “I can do it” and take up the challenge of being entrepreneurs and changemakers within their spaces.

“The major challenge, I see, is the mindset, we want to make money quickly, the young people think they cannot do it, they think entrepreneurship is for people who already are established, which is not the case,” she said.

She encouraged the young women to take advantage of the KIC agripreneurship programs where they would be mentored and supported to start and scale up their businesses.

Dr Felicia Naatu, the Head of the Department of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, SDD UBIDS, said leadership and entrepreneurship were bedfellows that must be harnessed in their best forms to succeed in any business venture.

She said having a business idea alone was not enough to succeed with it “because you need people around you to be able to improve upon it, to work on it, to develop it, [and] to expand it.

“But if you do not have the qualities of a leader, then of course, you won’t be able to manage it, there will be chaos: because people need direction, they need inspiration, they need encouragement to be able to work towards the goal that you have.”

Ms. Tracy Rashida Alhassan Bawa, a co-founder of BOOD Company Limited and beneficiary of the KIC Agritech Challenge, said the training and mentorship from the program have helped refine their business idea and got the business running.

“I must say the trainings were the ones that pruned us, we subjected ourselves to change, we committed ourselves to the program and that’s how the training refined our thinking. We were more like lifeline entrepreneurs but now we are professional entrepreneurs,” she said.

She said her venture, based in the Upper West Region, is on a mission to not just contribute to food security through improved yields but also ensure good nutrition among the populace.

Some participants of the boot camp shared their experiences from the series of speeches and panel discussions that were delivered.

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