Before getting involved with the mini-enterprise club, being an entrepreneur seemed completely mythical to me. Thanks to my teacher I am now Managing Director of Océan Mixte, a micro-business which my friends and I created.”
Rachel INGRID (on the left)
Final year student from the Collège Polyvalent l’Assomption and member of the mini-club enterprise.
SHOWCASING THE ENTREPRENEUR, AN IMPORTANT PLAYER IN THE FUTURE OF CAMEROON
An alternative to the unemployment which affects 55% of young people.
In a country where young people from the age of 15 to 34 makes up over a third of the population, and that third is three times more likely to be in the grip of unemployment, the creation of businesses seems to be one of the only solutions available. The young and qualified are above all tempted by administrative work (civil service) or in national firms, looking for stability and security, although those sectors are already saturated. Instead there is a large majority who perform odd jobs in the private sector, employment which is both precarious and likely short term. Those who dare to set up their own businesses are faced with a host of financial, administrative or personal difficulties…. The risk of giving up or failure is always high, all the more so because the education system is not geared to preparing them for the realities of the job market.
It is the ambition of Cameroun Entreprises Développement (CED), a local partner of the IECD, to help young people see entrepreneurship as a desirable and viable option, not just an unfortunate necessity or a means of survival. It wants to give them the keys to success. The idea of cultivating the entrepreneurial spirit from a young age, at least from secondary education, is one of the essential components in the program to support the small businesses of Cameroon.
Since September of 2014, the CED has been accompanying young students from a private lycée in Bafoussam. Once or twice a week, lessons are given on the management of a business, its finance and above all the qualities necessary to be a manager and an entrepreneur.
Entrepreneur week, organised each year in March is a busy time for the CED’s program. Heads of companies come to expound their experiences, members of the FNE (Fonds National de l’Emploi) hold workshops in career guidance and the young people of the Mini-Enterprise Club use the occasion to present their products to all-comers.”