The Livelihoods program is competitive; the entrepreneurial hopes of those on the program hinge on scrutiny of their business ideas, market research and cashflow numbers at the various pitching days which will be held this month. Sometimes, the most difficult part can be taking the first step, “My biggest challenge would be fear of starting a business”, said Moses. Alongside fellow entrepreneur Wendelin, both want to thrive in the dairy industry, “I want to be an entrepreneur because I already have the education, and because I have that, I can control my life”, Wendelin shared. The expertise and contribution of Raleigh partners is a key to the success of some entrepreneurs, and in the case of Moses and Wendelin, they owe a great deal to the support Raleigh has from the East Africa Dairy Development (EADD) program, which provides extensive training on dairy industry practices and operations, “Without Raleigh, my business would go wrong since I would have no knowledge of keeping cows, which I learnt from the partnership Raleigh has with EADD”, Moses affirmed.
Another entrepreneur, another business idea; Daniel recognised that without further training or education, his background would naturally lead him to small scale farming. Instead, he aspires to open a motorcycle repair shop in the village, “If Raleigh wasn’t here, my business would not be successful since I don’t have the education to control my business and so I would be a farmer instead”, he expressed. His ambition is not without challenges as not only is he missing the tools for opening the motorcycle repair shop, he also fears possible changes to the law may affect the sale of second hand vehicles.
Lastly, we have Rosemary, who joined the livelihoods program to make her life better and develop her knowledge of entrepreneurship, “The challenges I will face are: competition in prices, education, and not having enough capital”, she projects. Rosemary already has some business knowledge and even if she doesn’t secure the funding, she is determined to pursue success. Despite her fears of the competition and their knowledge of markets and business, Rosemary seeks to open a stationary shop and, “To be a good supplier of stationary to offices, to schools and even to other villages.”
Words by Miguel. Images by Echo 5.