Zimbabwe Farmers’ Union with support from the International Youth Foundation (IYF) is implementing the Zimbabwe works Entrepreneurship project.
The project aims to support nine hundred and forty-four youths from Bubi, Lupane, Goromonzi and Umizingwane between the ages of twenty and thirty-five of which at least sixty five percent will be women.
These nine hundred and ninety-four young agro-entrepreneurs being supported under this program are involved in rabbitry, indigenous chickens, and agri-processing.
Many young people have great business ideas but lack capital investment to bring their dreams to reality.
Under this project, young people will be equipped with basic financial skills required by micro finance institutions.
The trained youths will then be linked to Micro-Finance Institutions (MFIs) in order to improve the young people’s access to finance.
Looking at the set-up of communal areas commodities supported under this project are ideal because they are easy to handle and are adaptive to the local environment.
“There is also a growing market for these products especially in the food and processing sector,” said the Zimbabwe Works ZFU project manager, Mr Prince Kuipa.
Rabbits have a high turnover and this makes rabbit farming a quicker way of getting returns.
There is a huge gap in the supply of honey and this project aims to fill in that void.
“In part, it’s to encourage the production of honey and to also benefit the farmer because the market is readily available”. Said Mr Kuipa.
There is a growing market for processed goods, especially dried produce thus the Zimbabwe works project is also focusing on value addition.
” Value added products get more from the market and when the market is not doing well, farmers can stock and sell when the prices are good unlike fresh products which have to be sold whilst fresh.
Regions four and five are prone to the effects of climate change especially drought, hence the project will support youths from Bubi, Lupane and Umizingwane in order to improve the livelihoods of young people from these regions.