Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

Empowering Ghanaian Youth: BizBox Initiative Invests $55M for Entrepreneurship & Economic Growth


GEA and the Mastercard Foundation have announced the launch of a new awareness campaign for the innovative Business in a Box (BizBox) program, aiming to empower an additional 250,000 young individuals in Ghana. This initiative builds upon the successful partnership established through the Young Africa Works Program.
The Young Africa Works Program, operational from 2020 to 2022, surpassed its initial targets by supporting around 94,000 young people, doubling its intended impact. This assistance facilitated the establishment of businesses and the attainment of meaningful employment for these individuals. Leveraging this achievement, the BizBox program aims to assist 250,000 young people in securing dignified employment over the next four years.
In Amasaman, within the Greater Accra Region, Gifty Animwaa Owusu, a beneficiary of the GEA/Mastercard Foundation Young Africa Works Program, shares her remarkable journey from adversity to prosperity. "When I was in need, the GEA/Mastercard Foundation Young Africa Works Program became my beacon of hope," recalls Gifty Animwaa Owusu. Her participation in the A2E program and the invaluable Start-up Kit she received afterward were instrumental in her transformation. Gifty is now a thriving entrepreneur, supporting her family and mentoring young individuals in her community.
Through this intervention, Gifty has not only achieved financial stability but has also regained respect and dignity. Her success underscores the transformative potential of providing opportunities to young women. Reflecting on her path, Gifty acknowledges the impact of the business management training she underwent, which enabled her to fulfill the program requirements and receive support through GEA.
Gifty's narrative serves as a compelling illustration of how targeted assistance and empowerment can bring about significant change for individuals and communities alike. Her journey inspires aspiring entrepreneurs and highlights the effectiveness of initiatives such as the GEA/Mastercard Foundation Young Africa Works Program in fostering positive outcomes.

“The BizBox program aims to enable and empower disadvantaged young people across Ghana, especially young women with first-time business startups, to acquire skills and access to startup kits, markets, finance, and technology to start, build, and grow their businesses. We believe it will improve the well-being and resilience of young entrepreneurs by creating an enabling environment, especially for agriculture and agri-adjacent businesses to thrive and contribute to national development,” said Rica Rwigamba, Country Director of the Mastercard Foundation in Ghana.

With an infusion of GHS 660 million (equivalent to approximately USD 55 million), the BizBox initiative underscores GEA and the Mastercard Foundation's unwavering dedication to youth development. Set to operate until April 2027, the program aims to furnish young entrepreneurs with essential resources, knowledge, and guidance to initiate and expand their ventures. It will deliver comprehensive training covering life skills, technical know-how, entrepreneurship, and business expansion, thereby fostering growth and scalability.
A prominent aspect of the program is empowerment, with over 70 percent of its target participants being young women and 10 percent individuals with disabilities (PWDs), affirming its commitment to inclusivity and diversity in economic engagement.
"The BizBox program emerges as a beacon of hope, fostering economic empowerment and laying the groundwork for a prosperous future for Ghanaian youth. This is in harmony with the Government of Ghana's vision of engaging the youth in the nation's development," stated Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, CEO of the Ghana Enterprises Agency.
The program is designed to complement the government's ongoing endeavors to tackle the pervasive issue of youth unemployment. Notably, it aligns with the government's ambitious objective of creating one million jobs for young people by 2025.
Comprising five core components—Youth Skills Development, Access to Market, Access to Start-up Kits, Youth Social Networks and Institutional Strengthening, Policy, and Regulatory Support—the program's execution will involve a comprehensive process encompassing sensitization, application, selection, assessment, and training, with a focus on vulnerable youth, past beneficiaries, PWDs, marginalized women, women-owned/led MSMEs, and graduates from agricultural institutions.
The BizBox Program prioritizes holistic development over direct financial aid, aiming to equip entrepreneurs with the tools to establish resilient and competitive enterprises.