Youth for Africa and Sustainable Development Goals, YAS!, to support young entrepreneurs launched for West and North Africa

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Accenture announced the launch of YAS! (Youth for Africa and Sustainable Development Goals) (www.YASDG.com), a pan-African entrepreneurship portal-platform with a two-day programme in Lagos. The Portal-Platform addresses four main pillars of the entrepreneurship ecosystem: Information, Mentorship, Funding and Network.

“Africa’s entrepreneurial space is advancing rapidly – however, success stories are often isolated and commonly found only on the national or regional level”, according to Lamin Momodou Manneh, UNDP’s Regional Director. “In North and West Africa, Nigeria and Egypt are taking a lead role while other localities remain marginalized. YAS! will help to scale these efforts across the region – and the entire continent – to improve on the individual achievements and make them collective.”

YAS! is an initiative of UNDP, developed by its Regional Service Centre for Africa (RSCA) and powered by Accenture that aims to connect entrepreneurs to the resources they need to develop and grow their ideas or businesses. Users can interact on the platform, leveraging features such as learning, an ecosystem map, and information around opportunities for funding youth development.

The activation, which will take place on the 10th and 11th of December 2018, in Lagos, will be a two-day programme, where entrepreneurs, mentors, investors, corporates and donors will discuss entrepreneurial topics, attend workshops and network.

Day 1 will comprise panel discussions, workshops and a shark tank. On Day 2, there will be a hackathon, where entrepreneurs will learn about emerging technologies such as blockchain, big data & analytics, virtual reality, internet of things, artificial intelligence and industry X.0. They will also attempt to incorporate these emerging technologies into their solutions.

“Youth entrepreneurship is very important to the growth of the African economies. The more youth are empowered to create sustainable businesses, the more jobs are created. The YAS! Platform is committed to empowering youth with skills, funding and mentorship support to help them grow and scale.” Rory Moore, Liquid Studio Director and Innovation Lead, Accenture Africa.

About YAS!
YAS! (www.YASDG.com) is a portal-platform for Africa’s young entrepreneurs. The portal-platform supports the development and growth of youth entrepreneurship by providing the following pillars of support:
LEARN
Learning to help entrepreneurs begin their journey by providing the answers on the key concepts relevant to enterprise development.
ECOSYSTEM MAP
An eco-system map so that entrepreneurship stakeholders across the board – from corporates to entrepreneurs – can locate the different entrepreneurial eco-system service providers.
CHALLENGES
Challenges to award financing for youth to develop or scale and implement their innovations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as defined by the United Nations. The SDGs focus on ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring that all people everywhere enjoy peace and prosperity.
OPPORTUNITIES
Opportunities to learn more about funding and networking relevant for the entrepreneurship eco-system.
About UNDP:
The UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa (RSCA) (https://bit.ly/21UBaPl) is based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. There are other offices in Dakar, Senegal and Nairobi, Kenya, which serve UNDP’s 45 Country Offices in sub-Saharan Africa. The RSCA develops high quality knowledge and policy, which it interfaces with regional and continental bodies such as the African Union and the Regional Economic Communities, to promote socio-politico and economic progress in targeted regions. It also implements UNDP’s Regional Programmes for Africa.
This continent-wide Regional Programme supports Africa’s transformation agenda by 1) enhancing inclusive and sustainable growth, 2) widening political participation and giving everyone a voice, and 3) developing responsive institutions which deliver desired services and promote inclusive processes of state-society dialogue. The work builds on UNDP’s decades long global and regional expertise in development thinking and practice.
Other areas of interest which focus on regional and continental level include: preparation for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), improving countries’ public finance management, mitigating the impact of HIV and AIDS, building capacity for disaster risk management and climate change. The UN body also provides resources for the adaptation and enabling access to sustainable energy and sustainable use of natural resources, promoting gender equality and empowerment, and enhancing food security in the Sahel. The Centre also provides support to countries on aid and development effectiveness, South-South Cooperation.

 

About Accenture:
Accenture (www.Accenture.com) is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialised skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions – underpinned by the world’s largest delivery network – Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With approximately 442,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at www.Accenture.com.
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