Africa is already home to the world’s youngest population and its youth demographic is expected to grow further, doubling the size of the entire EU population in less than two decades! Across the continent, young people are hard at work honing their entrepreneurial skills, so the promise of continued growth is an exciting prospect.
To keep the demographic moving forward, investing in Africa’s youth population must be a priority. For example, we know that addressing the gender gap in girls’ education could yield $112 to $152 billion a year for developing countries.
Keep reading below to see what some of Africa’s up and coming youths are up to!
Laetitia Mukungu, Kenya
Laetitia was 13 years old when she had to drop out of school because her family was unable to afford the fees. One year later she founded the Africa Rabbit Centre, a cooperative organisation that raises and sells rabbits. The centre has been so successful they now employ 15 women, have sent 65 children to school, and provided three women with microloans to start their own businesses.
Jean Bosco Nzeyimana, Rwanda
At just 23 years old, Jean has been named one of Forbes 30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs In Africa 2017. He is the founder of Habona Ltd., an amazing company that collects organic waste and produces eco-friendly and affordable briquettes and bio-fertilizer for farmers. Jean hopes Habona will inspire other youths to get engaged with the agricultural sector. He writes, “young people must recognise the opportunities that farming offers; the first being job creation. Farming has the potential for reducing unemployment among youths.”
Leah Kibe, Kenya
Leah is the director and founder of the Colour World Green Initiative Library. After noticing her brother struggling to read, she began to collect books from friends and family and invited other children to join in. Leah saw an unfulfilled need in the community and decided to establish an official library. It now provides nearly 1,000 students with access to reading and learning materials.
Regina Honu, Ghana
Having worked in the tech industry since she was a young woman, Regina is familiar with the challenges women in the STEM industry face, so she founded the Tech Needs Girls program. The program teaches girls in Ghana and Burkina Faso coding skills and provides them with mentors and role models to help ensure they get the opportunity to go to university!
Brian Bosire, Kenya
Brian founded UjuziKilimo — which means “knowledge farming” in Swahili — and developed a handheld electronic device that gathers information about soil quality. This information is analysed and can help farmers know what crops will grow best in their fields. In his early 20s, Brian is already changing lives by helping farmers make profits on their crops!