The Mastercard Foundation, one of the largest foundations in the world, has announced plans to provide African entrepreneurs with seed funding and mentorship to lead impactful projects in their communities.
The move is part of the ‘Resolution Social Venture Challenge’, an initiative that seeks to create the ‘Next-Generation African Leaders’.
Fifteen teams of a total of 32 emerging African social entrepreneurs have already been selected as winners of the 2018 Resolution Social Venture Challenge.
A total of thirty teams of Mastercard Foundation Scholars gathered in Kigali, Rwanda to compete in the Resolution Social Venture Challenge, for a fellowship that includes seed funding, mentorship, and access to a network of young global changemakers to pursue impactful projects in their communities.
The Mastercard Foundation’s work is guided by its mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion for people living in poverty. One of the largest foundations in the world, it works almost exclusively in Africa. It was created in 2006 by Mastercard International and operates independently under the governance of its own Board of Directors. The Foundation is based in Toronto, Canada.
The organisation’s drive is part of a collaboration between the Mastercard Foundation and The Resolution Project, the Resolution Social Venture Challenge, organisations looking to empower entrepreneurs from across the continent.
“Africa’s young leaders are brimming with talent, ideas, energy, and a deep desire to have a positive impact on their communities. Yet few young people receive the support and tools they need to ensure a project or social venture they want to undertake is successful,” explained Ashley Collier, Manager of Youth Engagement and Networks at the Mastercard Foundation.
“By winning the Social Venture Challenge, these young leaders have earned the resources, network, mentorship, and capital they need to implement their venture and to maximize their impact,” Collier added.
Winning projects address a wide range of challenges Scholars have observed first-hand in their communities, including digital literacy, a lack of mental health supports, access to sanitation, and climate-smart agriculture.
The 2018 cohort of Social Venture Challenge winners includes projects based in Kenya, Gambia, Uganda, Somaliland, Ghana, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Malawi, Tanzania, and Lebanon.