WILDLANDS, through a programme known as the ‘Rural Sustainable Enterprise Development and Skill Strengthening Programme’, is made possible by a grant from the Walmart Foundation. Recently, WILDLANDS handed over start up stock to 25 of our 74 program beneficiaries who are entrepreneurs at the KwaMbonambi community (Northern KwaZulu-Natal). These awards will be used by the entrepreneurs to kick start their businesses just in time for the festive season.
Thanks to the grant funding support from the Walmart Foundation, WILDLANDS has been able to support these entrepreneurs to each receive start up stock for their various businesses to the value of R8 000 each. This award came after a process of completing four-unit standards of the New Venture Creation training and pitching their business ideas to the WILDLANDS review team. The various unit standards courses covered topics which included marketing, business plan development, identifying and demonstrating entrepreneurial ideas and opportunities as well as market needs assessments.
The beneficiaries were selected into the program from WILDLANDS’ group of YES4YOUTH team members, a complementary entrepreneurship development program that is supported by Nedbank. The top 25 most sustainable business ideas were picked, after much discussion and deliberation, to be a part of the Rural Sustainable Development programme implemented by WILDLANDS and supported by grant funding from the Walmart Foundation in the KwaMbonambi and Dukuduku areas. This program offers additional layers of capacity development support and training. For example, these entrepreneurs will go on to receive an additional four-unit standards of business training and intensive mentorship from our small business development mentors – setting them up well to ensure a successful and sustainable small business in the future.
“We are pleased to see the continued progress that WILDLANDS is making in delivering its programme to stimulate entrepreneurship and market access opportunities for rural SMEs. These SMEs are receiving critical skills development and training, as well as related support from WILDLANDS to help them catalyse and grow their businesses. This comprehensive approach can support these SMEs to become more sustainable over time”, said Sherry-Lee Singh, Director, Sustainability, Walmart.org.
“We were very impressed by the wide range of business ideas pitched to us this year. Each of the chosen ideas were well researched, which leaves us confident that these businesses are going to be a good fit for the community. The main businesses included livestock and vegetable farming, internet cafes, catering and event décor,” concluded Sam Houghting, WILDLANDS’ Strategic Manager – Sustainable Livelihoods.
For more information on our entrepreneurs and their businesses, follow our social media pages https://www.facebook.com/WildlandsConservationTrust/ on FB or visit www.wildtrust.co.za