Cohort 2 MSME Business mentorship Graduate

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The Regional Centre for Enterprise Development (RCED) held its second graduation for the MSME Business Mentorship Program on Thursday, July 12, 2012. Thirty three business mentors graduated bringing to 58 the number of graduates from the program. So far, more than 70 mentee enterprises have been supported by RCED-trained business mentors. The business mentorship course is a first in East and Central Africa and seeks to professionalize the industry with standards, ethics and guidelines.

Speaking during the ceremony, Prof Henry Thairu, the Vice Chancellor of Inoorero University, said the mentorship program, which is funded by the Royal Danish Embassy and supported by various industry players, continues to boost enterprise development by nurturing growth-oriented startups into steady and sustainable ventures with significant returns to the economy.

He also noted the University in partnership with the International Labour Organization – Youth Enterprise Facility (ILO-YEF) is set to begin an entrepreneurship training programme targeting the youth “We are also almost concluding plans to launch a practical entrepreneurship training programme for youths in tertiary education that will be modular based and hands on, this is in line with our motto of being the Enterprise University.”

The Deputy Danish Ambassador to Kenya, His Excellency Ole Thonke who was the Chief Guest during the ceremony reiterated his country’s support for the programme, “Denmark continues to support the Kenyan private sector through the Business Sector Support Programme Support whose objective is to create employment in the MSME sector especially for the youth and women in order to effectively increase economic growth and reduce unemployment, as derived from Vision 2030.”

Also present during the graduation was the University’s Chancellor, Hon. F.T. Nyammo who is fronting the MSE Bill 2011 in parliament currently in its second reading. “It is with the realization of the critical role played by the MSME sector as a key source of productivity, growth and job creation, that has seen the Kenya Private Sector Alliance and Inoorero University liaise to support the enactment of the MSE Bill 2011.”

RCED is currently partnering with other industry players such as the East Africa Business Council (EABC) and Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) to roll out the mentorship program to the other East African States. The Federation of Women Entrepreneur Associations (FEWA) to offer county-based business mentorship programs for women entrepreneurs and with the Youth Enterprise Development Fund to provide customized business mentorship programs for the youth entrepreneurs.