The Africa Students Support Network (AFRISSUN) uses Entrepreneurial Leadership (EL) education and seed capital investments to enable 50 struggling part-time student workers in Central Uganda to attend school by assisting them to start legal and manageable side-businesses to generate extra income. With the COVID-19 workplace changes, we even need to work more closely with students to mitigate potential financial indifferences to a bright future because the jobs students used to do are no more.
The COVID-19 closure of schools has negatively impacted our EL education and seed capital investment programs because 95% of the operating costs have always been footed by students. Consequently, the absence of entrepreneurial guidance, as well as job alternatives for struggling students, has put them at risk of venturing into crime and undesired sexual activities to earn a living at the expense of their future and Uganda's future as 75% of the population is under the age of 30 years.
Ugandan student entrepreneurs from leading world institutions will facilitate 2 direct contact and 2 virtual EL training sessions in line with COVID-19 standard operating procedures with 25 students in each training cohort. The students will learn how to make liquid soap, face masks, books and reusable sanitary pads. After the program, students will receive seed capital investments to grow their businesses. We shall use an online platform and direct visits to monitor student business growth.
We teach EL education because it empowers students to take ownership of the future even in amidst obstacles by enabling students to see problems as opportunities. Our program will birth a supportive, sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystem to enable cohorts of 50 financially struggling students annually to attain a quality education that will empower them to break cycles of poverty and unemployment by creating a total of 500 employment opportunities for fellow youth in two years.