The Chairman for Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) Patrick Bitature has said that they are in the final stages of setting up a social trustee fund.
The fund will further improve the private sector’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Speaking at the inaugural graduation of the Yunus Social Business (YSB) accelerator at the Uganda Industrial Research Institute (UIRI) on Friday where he was the guest of honour. Bitature noted that it is time for the private sector to accelerate their efforts in pushing the economy to a higher level. “We are starting this fund because we want toimprove lives of people positively through a uniformed and improved CSR,” said Bitature.
PSFU was founded in 1995 to serve as a focal point for private sector advocacy as well as capacity building and it’s made up of over 185 business associations, corporate bodies and major public sector agencies that support private sector growth. According to Bitature, PSFU has been and continues to be Government’s implementation partner for several projects and programmes aimed at strengthening the private sector as an engine of economic growth.
“CSR is not only giving back to people but also improve their livelihood and we should use it to create jobs and tackle the issue of unemployment through social ventures,” said Bitature. PSFU’s Executive Director, Gideon Badagawa said that the fund will be launched early next year.
More than 15 entrepreneurs graduated with certificates from YSB and were told to put their newly acquired knowledge in practice by ensuring that they create jobs through social innovations. YSB’s executive director, Eriab Kizza said that they are working very hard to identify at least 1,000 social jobs annually because there are many untapped opportunities in the social business sector. YSB began its operations in Uganda in 2013 as a pilot programme with the African Development Bank devoted to promoting and creating an environment within which social business can thrive in Uganda.
YSB was founded by Yunus Muhammad, a Bengali social entrepreneur, Banker, Economist and civil society leader. Some of the graduates included proprietors of Kawempe Youth Center, Kitengesa Rural Library, Uganda Development Services, Nambi-Sepuya Library, Rukungiri Dairy Farmers Project, Bwega Information Library, Awamu Biomas Energy among others. YSB operates in seven countries of Colombia, Brazil, Haiti, Tunisia, Uganda, India and Balkans.
Story by By Isaac Baligema.
Originally published in http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/675836-private-sector-foundation-sets-up-social-fund.html
Fifteen entrepreneurs have graduated from the first ever Yunus Social Business (YSB) accelerator programme. The programme which was launched at the beginning of 2015 targeted a cross section of social entrepreneurs who were asked to submit their proposals.
The programme designed for visionary social entrepreneurs aims to grow their businesses as they create social impact in the communities they work with. It was an intensive experience during which the entrepreneurs received expert coaching, mentoring, exposure to potential investors and partners.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony, Mr Patrick Bitature, the chairman, Private Sector Foundation and also social business entrepreneur, told the business minds that they are now standing on the threshold of moving their social business to the next level.
However, he reminded them the principles of social business and the learnings from this accelerator programme, urging them to look at their group-mates, coaches and mentors, because from now on life will scatter them around again. “So meet to consult, recall the best moments of this program that you shared, and put in practice what you learned,” he cautioned the graduands.
Eriab Kiza, the executive director YSB -Uganda said there is one major reason for the accelerator program which was to address the shortage of strong growth-oriented social entrepreneurs ready to utilize impact funds.
The YSB accelerator programme is, therefore, focused on identifying such entrepreneurs, helping them to design businesses for high social impact, supporting them in testing ideas for scaling up, coaching them to become financially viable and sustainable, providing needed impact funds at lower than commercial terms and conditions, and generally assisting them to create technology and market linkages.
Story by Jonathan Adengo.
All Africa Media, originally published in http://allafrica.com/stories/201511271302.html