Kabale University and UNDP Uganda partner to establish a Regional Business IncubatorCollins Mann
A strategic partnership between Kabale University and UNDP has been established to develop innovation ecosystems within Uganda’s public universities and to implement the Youth4Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Facility. As part of the agreement, Kabale University will establish a Business Incubation Center. A facility such as this will provide students with access to workspaces, mentorship, education, and investors to assist them in their efforts to innovate. Throughout the region, the Centre will assist student innovators and start-ups in obtaining intellectual property rights and commercializing their innovations. The Centre will also provide a platform for collaboration between student innovators and established businesses in the region. This will ensure that the innovations developed at Kabale University have a greater impact in the region and can be more easily adopted in the market.
Ms. Elsie Attafuah, UNDP’s Resident Representative in Uganda, stressed that the Youth4Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Facility is an innovative tool designed to harness Uganda’s youth’s innovative and entrepreneurial potential. It is intended to promote impact-driven entrepreneurship, foster innovation, and employ business solutions to combat youth unemployment. This initiative is part of UNDP’s broader efforts to foster innovation ecosystems in Uganda’s public universities. Through the partnership between UNDP and Kabale University, the Youth4Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Facility will also be implemented. In order to accomplish this, equipment will be procured and installed for the Kabale University Business Incubation Center, as well as support for the center’s operationalization.
UNDP wishes to utilize Uganda’s dynamic public and private universities, which have established Uganda as a center of excellence for higher education within the Eastern and Central African Region. We intend to leverage this potential by partnering with Kable University to foster innovation and entrepreneurship among Ugandan youth and promote sustainable development,” said Ms. Elsie Attafuah. Additionally, Ms Attafuah acknowledges that Ugandan universities have demonstrated remarkable results in innovation. In order to keep pace with global trends, institutions are now actively engaged in development policies while integrating science, technology, and innovation. In her words, “The partnership between UNDP and Kabale University is a significant step in leveraging these universities’ potential to foster innovation and entrepreneurship.”
Her statement expressed her hope that this partnership would accelerate progress towards achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda. As a result of the partnership, she believes that it will serve as a prime example of how partnerships can play a significant role in delivering innovative and unique solutions for development. It is with great gratitude that Ms. Attafuah extends her appreciation to Prof. Joy Kwesiga and the entire KAB team for their contribution to this partnership.
In her remarks, Prof. Joy Kwesiga noted that Kabale University was delighted to partner with UNDP in the establishment of a regional business incubator. “In order to ensure the long-term creation of employment and livelihood opportunities for youth, women, and other marginalized groups, Kabale University plans to utilize the Youth$Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Facility,” she said. In addition, Prof. Kwesiga noted that the facility is designed to foster innovation and entrepreneurship by creating a strong, functional, and inclusive ecosystem. Through this facility, KAB aims to provide students with the necessary skills, knowledge, and resources to launch and sustain successful business ventures. This will not only create employment opportunities for the university’s graduates, but will also contribute to Uganda’s economic development.
Attafuah reiterated UNDP’s commitment to supporting youth and youth-led enterprises by piloting innovative ideas and providing them with the resources necessary to scale up their successes into viable commercial ventures. As part of its work, UNDP also promotes the resilience of MSMEs and empowers them to create sustainable enterprises. The purpose of this approach is to establish an ecosystem platform that connects young entrepreneurs, the government, the private sector, development partners, financial institutions, and other relevant stakeholders. The UNDP aims to create an enabling environment for young entrepreneurs to thrive and contribute to the economic development of Uganda by fostering collaboration and providing access to resources, states Ms. Attafuah.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is fully committed to supporting the Government of Uganda in achieving sustainable development and creating opportunities for empowerment, environmental protection, disaster risk reduction, building strategic partnerships, and improving the quality of life for all Ugandans. In its Country Programme Document for Uganda 2021-2025, UNDP outlines its priorities and strategies for assisting the government in these areas. UNDP seeks to contribute to the achievement of Uganda’s development goals and the realization of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development through close collaboration with the government and other stakeholders.
A team led by UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, Ms. Sheila Ngatia, and the Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs, Hon Mateke Nyirabashitsi, brought 42 members to the YouthConnekt Summit in Kigali, including grantees of the Youth4Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship Facility, youth leaders, Kabale University student innovators, UNDP staff, and government officials.
In addition to showcasing their products and innovations during the market exhibitions, Kabale University students networked with private sector partners from other countries. This was for future business collaborations. As a result of this opportunity, the youth gained exposure to other successful entrepreneurs from different parts of the globe and were able to learn from them. In order to promote entrepreneurship in Uganda, UNDP continues to support the development of youth-led enterprises through this initiative. This initiative has helped many young people gain the skills and resources needed to launch their own businesses. It has also provided them with access to networks, mentors, and other resources. It is our hope that this initiative will help to create a more dynamic and entrepreneurial economy in Uganda.