The CEO of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu, was live on Arise News on Tuesday, January 5, where she discussed updates to the 2021 TEF Entrepreneurship Programme and the role of the Foundation in driving the economic recovery of small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) across the continent.
Here are salient quotes from her event:
- Today, Entrepreneurship is on the global agenda and that is what we need to do to give small and medium enterprises the much needed lifeline they need to overcome the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.
- For us, it is critical to prioritise women because gender inclusivity in our African economy is very important because we know that women make up majority of the workforce in the small and medium enterprises
- And that is why we partnered with the European Union, particularly the EU DEFCO to identify, train, fund and mentor an additional 2400 women across all 54 African countries in 2021
- We at the Tony Elumelu Foundation believe that funding and training are 2 sides of the same coin. The key to our partnerships is ensuring that funding is going directly into the hands of these entrepreneurs.
- For us at the Tony Elumelu Foundation, it was critical that we lead the charge for economic recovery post COVID-19 pandemic and that is why this year’s Application drive for the Tony Elumelu Foundation 2021 Entrepreneurship Programme is particularly important.
- We need to begin to change the narrative and I think that the Tony Elumelu Foundation is leading the new narrative in how to engage in Africa. Gone are the days where aid is the order of the day. While that is important, we must think long term, we must think sustainable development.
- We need to create a self reliant Africa where the youth of Africa have a job creating mentality and not a job seeking mentality because that is the only thing that will ensure that enough jobs are created on the continent to cater to the burgeoning youth population.
- The call to action to development organisations, to private sector, to governments, is to trust the African Entrepreneur, train the African Entrepreneur and put money direct in the African Entrepreneur, and that is what we do at the Tony Elumelu Foundation
- We are leading the charge to ensure that African Entrepreneurs have not just the training, the funding, but also the enabling environment that they need to grow and thrive.
- The impact that we’ve seen from our entrepreneurs and their ability to create jobs, revenue and transform their communities, shows us the power of Entrepreneurship.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation is currently accepting applications to the 2021 Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme. We are inviting all young African men and women with business ideas or start-ups to apply on tefconnect.com