JAB empowers youth entrepreneurs

Junior Achievers at the event held last week. PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO
Junior Achievers at the event held last week. PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO

Junior Achievement Botswana (JAB) is attaining its mission of empowering young Batswana to succeed in the ‘world of work’ through a dynamic entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy programme.

This has been made possible through the annual JAB competitions, which include all the winners from the northern and southern regions.  All the winners showcase what they have learnt from the JAB company programme through presentation of business plans, company reports, stall exhibitions, innovation and oral presentations.

The judging criteria has been divided into three categories, which will feature 84 participants from the in-school business category and out-of-school category, which includes the technical college participants.

In an interview with Monitor Business, JAB Executive Director Tshidi Tlhong said that through these competitions, they are instilling a sense of entrepreneurship and self-sustainability among the participants.

“We cultivate and energise the spirit of free enterprise and self- reliance amongst the youth.

We teach our children to apply what they have learnt in their classrooms and commercialise it to help create jobs and be innovative, thus reducing dependency in waiting for jobs to be created for them,” she said.

Further, Tlhong said that the businesses would compete in seven themes, which will include environment, wildlife and tourism, consultancy services, design and technology and infrastructure, arts and crafts, manufacturing, agribusiness as well as wellness and recreation.

She added that there are five stages to the competition, as at each stage the judges make an assessment of the company.

“There is no winning formula. Each company is different and its members must decide how best to convey their understanding and experience to the judges.

“The company report should be used to qualify a good business plan since it shows how the business plan was implemented,” Tlhong added

This included company report, which entails business plan, trade stand display and interviews at the stand, oral presentation, interview with the judging criteria as well as innovation award.

JAB is a non-profit organisation, which deals with entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy education programme.

Currently, their target group is students in junior and secondary schools, but plans are afoot to open the programme to primary school students.

The programme covers all the students in both rural and urban areas.

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