regional youth exhibition initiative of The Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce
(GYCC) has reached the country’s Central River Region (CRR) with a weeklong
exhibition holding in Bansang, starting on Monday.
With creating space for youth entrepreneurs to curb irregular migration as the theme; 30 young exhibitors participated in the trading event funded by the European Union funded Youth Empowerment Project (YEP). This is the third regional youth exhibition GYCC has organised.
At the end of the exhibition, GYCC will launch a regional chapter that will continue to steer the affairs of youth entrepreneurs in the region and to support them in capacity building to curb other social vices.
GYCC and YEP are also expected to conduct a market assessment (lumos) in Central River, North Bank, Lower River and Upper River Regions to assess opportunities, spaces and challenges of the local trade fairs (lumos) and find ways on how YEP could support the facilitation of better spaces for youth.
Chief executive officer of GYCC Baboucarr Kebbeh said creating of a public entrepreneurship space places great hope in the empowerment of young people to shape Gambia’s future; saying young people themselves are The Gambia.
Mr. Kebbeh emphasised that to realise the youth demographic dividend, government and the private sector must invest in the empowerment, education and employment of the young people.
He said 38% of Gambian youth are not either employed nor with decent job to be able to realise their individual dreams and aspirations, adding that the unprecedented rate of these circumstances are unacceptable.
Operations and finance officer of the YEP project Baboucarr Sallah said the project’s intervention areas includes tourism, agro-business, ICT and livelihood development. He said the project do not only train young people but also give them start-up capital to start their own business.
He appealed to young entrepreneurs to always take advantage of the available opportunities in the country, saying the project is ready readiness to will continue to support Gambian youth.
Central River Region Governor Sulayman Barry said Gambian young people have talents and many of them are doing excellent works that are not known to many people because of their inadequate exposure.
He said the government is devising strategies that will support young people and leave long term positive impacts on their lives, adding that government saying it has been taking many actions and initiatives to empower young people to be able to participate in social, economic and political environments.
Governor Barry said Gambia’s development to a larger extent entirely rests in the hands of the young people since they form the greater number of the population. “Young people must make the right choices, right now.”