The 3-year project worth $505,000 will train 600 Cameroonian SMEs through SBEC’s flagship SME Programme and provide job and entrepreneurial soft skills training to 4,500 women and youths
By Boris Esono Nwenfor
The Rising Tide Foundation and the John Templeton Foundation have injected a new five hundred and five thousand (505, 000) dollars into the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Centre (SBEC) of the Denis and Lenora Foretia Foundation, with the aim to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), build entrepreneurship skills and promote free enterprise in Cameroon.
Entitled “Powering prosperity and Economic Freedom for Women and Youths in Cameroon”, the project from the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Centre according to the Foretia Foundation seeks to build a more robust and diverse middle class, foster economic freedom and empower women and youth. It will particularly focus on vulnerable populations, especially those internally displaced as a result of the ongoing armed conflict in the North West and South West regions of the country.
For the past years, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Centre has been engaging youths and women in entrepreneurship with a focus on business management, tax systems and access to finance. SBEC has also organized webinars with a focus on the challenges of female entrepreneurs in Cameroon, the Economic Impact of COVID-19 on Entrepreneurship in Cameroon and the way forward and more.
“This important project will allow our teams to better investigate the barriers to individual flourishing, the challenges facing small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as help, improve the job skills of women and youth,” said Dr Denis Foretia, Co-Chair of the Denis and Lenora Foretia Foundation. “We are excited at the opportunity to have a direct impact on many SMEs, to provide them with direct administrative and financial support, and to help them prepare for growth.”
The Small Business and Entrepreneurship Center (SBEC) was founded to support SMEs across the country and to promote business-friendly policies that stimulate innovation and job creation. Through the SBEC Network, member SMEs receive training and administrative support to increase productivity and efficiency.
“We are honored to support the important and transformative work that the Foretia Foundation is doing in Cameroon especially as it relates to advancing human flourishing and free enterprise” noted the Rising Tide Foundation. “We look forward to working with their team in ensuring the success of this initiative,” the RTF said in a statement shared with PAV.
The 3-year project will train 600 Cameroonian SMEs through SBEC’s flagship SME Program and provide job and entrepreneurial soft skills training to 4,500 women and youth. 30 promising SME leaders who complete the flagship training will be eligible to receive a seed grant of 2,500 USD to strengthen their organizational structure. The project will also focus on reducing the cost of registering and starting a business by half to improve the overall business environment in the country.
About the Denis and Lenora Foretia Foundation
The Denis & Lenora Foretia Foundation was established to catalyze Africa’s economic transformation by focusing on social entrepreneurship, science and technology, innovation, public health, and progressive policies that create economic opportunities for all. The foundation works in partnership with local governments, policymakers, private enterprises, civil society organizations as well as development partners to expand the resources available to entrepreneurs, farmers, and small business owners in addition to improving individual livelihoods. https://www.foretiafoundation.org
About the Rising Tide Foundation
The Rising Tide Foundation supports studies and programs that deliver results for cancer patients and empower individuals to develop their skills to make a difference for themselves and the greater community. Based in Schaffhausen Switzerland, but with a truly global reach, it strongly believes that the market economy, in concert with limited government and rule of law, holds the greatest promise of freedom and prosperity for all. Through its philanthropic activities, the foundation supports efforts that promote financial prosperity, individual flourishing, and sustainable income generation. https://www.risingtide-foundation.org
About the John Templeton Foundation
Founded in 1987, the John Templeton Foundation supports research and dialogue on the deepest and most perplexing questions facing humankind. The Foundation funds work on subjects ranging from black holes and evolution to creativity, forgiveness, and free will. It also encourages civil, informed dialogue among scientists, philosophers, theologians, and the public at large. With over $2.8 billion in assets and annual grants of $220 million in 2021, the Foundation ranks among the 25 largest grantmaking foundations in the United States. Headquartered outside Philadelphia, its philanthropic activities have engaged all major faith traditions and extended to more than 190 countries around the world. https://www.templeton.org