In the communities of Koudi and Namjung, BNP Paribas (Suisse) SA volunteers have been working with entrepreneurs to develop business skills and knowledge which will support them to launch their own enterprises. On a five-day training programme, one in each community, the volunteers met over 40 entrepreneurs who were hoping to start or expand businesses. From agricultural-based businesses such as banana farming, poultry keeping and goat farming, to services such as tailoring, shop keeping and electrics, the entrepreneurs were full of ideas and passion for business.
Participants on the programme were trained on using key entrepreneurial tools for their businesses. These included the Business Model Canvas (BMC), a tool which allows entrepreneurs to map out their business on one page, and the SWOT analysis, which encourages business people to consider the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats to their enterprise.
A key part of the programme was scenario-based business games. One game encouraged participants to consider surprise events – such as having to pay unexpected hospital fees or purchase gifts – and how to develop a business which can cope with economic shock. Other games involved requesting loans from the Raleigh bank (aptly lead by our BNP Paribas (Suisse) SA volunteers) and introduced the dangers of gambling in business.
Through these games and exercises, these aspiring entrepreneurs gained skills and knowledge which they could implement in their own business.
The training programme culminated in entrepreneurs beginning to develop business plans for their own individual business ideas. After the training is complete, participants are encouraged to further develop their own business plans and to get their business registered in Gorkha.
Birendra, who received training on the programme, hopes to start his own wiring and electrics business. He said:
“I currently perform wiring on a freelance basis. I now want to start my own electric shop where I can sell electric appliances, while continuing to do wiring in homes around my community. My favourite part of this training has been developing my own business idea and learning how to grow a business, and I now hope that I can use these new skills to bridge the gap between what I want and what I have.”
Benjamin, volunteer from BNP Paribas (Suisse) SA, said: “I think all participants will have a better life after this training as they all seem really interested in this training and have learnt lots of new things. It’ll be good for a number of the entrepreneurs to expand their businesses, and also for them share their skills with others in their community who couldn’t attend this training, so it will help others to have a better and easier life.”
The skills-based volunteer programme was delivered in partnership with Raleigh International and BNP Paribas (Suisse) SA. As partners of Raleigh Nepal, BNP Paribas (Suisse) SA fund Raleigh’s water and sanitation programme as well as Raleigh Nepal’s host country volunteers.