River Region exhibitors has commended and thanked organisers and funders of
regional youth exhibition and called on them to regularly stage the trade fair
in the region to expose their businesses and create opportunities for them.
The 7-day Trade Fair organised by Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce (GYCC) and funded EU Trust Fund for Africa through the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) in Jarra Soma, Lower River Region brought together 40 youth exhibitors from 24 to 30 October 2017.
The main objective of the exhibition was to create space for the young people in the regions to exhibit their products and services, network with other enterprises to unlock wealth and boost the economic growth of young people and as well set-up a regional chapter in the region to enable decentralisation of the function of the chamber at the regional level.
The theme for the exhibition was “creating space for youth empowerment to curb youth irregular migration”.
Naffisatou Sarr, a fruit seller at the Trade Fair described the event as successful for them exhibitors and thanked the organisers for the well-organised event.
She urged them to stage the exhibition in the region regularly and thanked funders, who she said, want to see young people progress.
Aminata A. Saho, who was engage in local beverage production, said the trade fair went well for her, particular these days that the climate was hot.
She lauded the initiative of the trade fair which was being held in the region for the first-time, adding that encouraging young people to venture into business was very important.
He appealed to organisers to regularly stage the event in the region in order for people to adopt to it, pointing out that there are young people into business but lack empowerment and thanked the organisers and funders.
According to her, young people could do great things when empowered.
Amadou Bah, second hand clothes, and agricultural products seller and a tailor, said sales were not huge for him but the initiative was welcomed.
He also joined others in appealing for the initiative to be sustained as it would bring development not only to the region but the country as a whole.
Ousman Suso, urged young people to venture into business, saying business was what carries a nation forward.
Yaya Manneh, tie and die and other clothes seller, said they need support that would boost their business and ensure they benefit not just themselves but society as a whole as well as ensure they desist from the ‘back-way’ journey to Europe.
“We are really pleased with the organisation because they are helping us and not themselves,” he said.
Sanna Darboe, cosmetic and fashion wear seller, said the initiative was meant to empower young people and they hope it benefit a lot of people.
She noted that staging it regularly would expose their businesses and also give them the opportunities to network with others.
Biggeh Jammeh, a Churia seller, said most of her products were sold and thanked organised and funders for the opportunity provided for them.
Kaddy Fadera, food items and beverage seller, said the event was meant to help and create opportunities for them, as no business is useless, saying it was the businessman or woman that was useless.
She encourages young people to take up business.
Baboucarr Kebbeh, Chief Executive Officer of Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce, explained that there was a free trade fair exhibition training held for the 40 youth exhibitors prior to the event to prepare their minds because 90 per cent of them had never taken part in such kind of exhibitions and required that preparedness.
Mr Kebbeh highlighted that The Gambia needs to create space for the entrepreneurs, adding that if such trade fairs are not organise they would not know if young people have interest in business.
He further said that if you want to curb youth irregular migration you have to create something for young people, noting: “if such space is created for them every 6 months or yearly it will serve as a source of inspiration for other young people to venture into business”.
He called on government and private sector to invest in young people, noting that young people have always been at the receiving end with LRR being the most marginalize and tagged with a lot of social vices.
He said projects needs to be redirected towards young people of the region, adding that access to finance has been a major issue but they are hopeful the mini grant coming for YEP would address some of the issues of access to finance.