15 social business entrepreneurs graduate from YSB Uganda accelerator

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