By Olimatou Coker
The Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce (GYCC) with the support from Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) recently organized a press briefing on the upcoming Lumo assessment of existing potential markets for young people in the various regions.
The main objective of the Lumo assessment is to assess the issues and reactivate market linkages from the existing local markets in the regions to improve youth empowerment opportunities to create wealth.
The upcoming Lumo assessment is also targeted to increase networking, income and business exposure of young entrepreneurs in markets and as well as build capacity on product development, branding and marketing.
Speaking at the press conference Assistant Program Officer Ms Satang Dumbuya said GYCC is a youth-led institution that fights for creating space by organizing regional exhibitions, training, mentorship programs and soft skills for youths.
“GYCC is the voice of young entrepreneurs in the Gambia and we mobilize young African entrepreneurs in the Gambia to improve their lives and give them a voice,” she said.
As a board, they deemed it necessary for the Government and private individuals to create space for young people in entrepreneurship, some are in the tourism sector while others are engaged in processing different kinds of foods in different forms, she added.
For his part Mr. Baboucarr Kebbeh CEO of GYCC said that regarding the way Lumos are organized they do not see much young people taking part in it, adding that one of the reasons for this assessment is to understand the pros and the cons in those markets.
“The assessment will be done by a seven man team work in four major regions and basically the Lower River region, North Bank Region, Upper River Region and Central River Region and in each of these regions we will target two major markets,” she said.
“It is crucial to know that this cohort of the society are being marginalized and left unprepared to contribute to the national development and thus has increased the unemployment rate (38%).
“Therefore the need to assess these markets to find out the real issues through community engagements and discussions on the opinions of the people, especially those actively participated in the local market,” he said.
He revealed that on the assessment proper, a seven-person team will travel to the regions a day before the weekly markets, adding that they will meet with the community elders.
“On the next day they will reach out the 2 major local markets to conduct a 3 to 4 hours assessment using the questionnaires in a language they understand best,” he said.