Budding entrepreneurs urged to apply for scheme

YES receipient Adelene Tutu recieves her cheque from Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya at Civic House in Suva earlier today. Picture: JONA KONATACI

BUDDING entrepreneurs with innovative and bankable business ideas are being urged to apply for the Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme.

Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya made the call this morning as he presented cheques to three grant recipients of the scheme at the ministry.

One of the recipients, fitness trainer, Adelene Tutu, received $20,000 to assist her with setting up a fitness website and app.

The mother-of-two said she decided to start her own fitness training business after she faced some challenges trying to live healthy.

“I found it very difficult to find the right kind of food in the markets and there was a diet app available but the food in that app was not readily available,” she said.

Ms Tutu said with the grant she would be able to set up a fitness website and a diet app for women who needed help.

“Now I have about 50 women who are in my program and I am working on meal plans for five women who are committed to the fitness program,” she said.

ABOUT YES:

YES is an initiative of the Fijian Government to help young graduates become job creators rather than job seekers.

A budget of $2million was allocated for the scheme in the 2017/2018 National Budget to provide grants up to a maximum of $20,000 to young entrepreneurs between the ages of 18-30.

The primary objective of YES is to provide immediate assistance in the form of grants to young and budding entrepreneurs who have innovative and bankable ideas/projects which financial institutions are not willing to support due to lack of collateral. This will partly address the market failure where financial institutions are reluctant to provide start-up capital to young entrepreneurs.

Successful young aspiring entrepreneurs will then be provided business training and mentorship to enable them to operate financially viable businesses.

To be eligible for the scheme, one must be:

– a young Fijian between the ages of 18 to 30 years;
– must have completed a vocational/technical diploma or a degree from a recognized institution; and
– must be a Fijian citizen.