A Challenge Fund for Young Agripreneurs in Uganda

Applications for 2022 edition is open: Skilling in Agripreneurship for increased Youth Employment (SAY) project is providing an opportunity for youth in agribusiness to take their business ventures to the next level.

Potential and already locked-in youth agripreneurs will compete for grants which they can utilize to expand their ventures or meet additional costs and engage in innovative initiatives that provide solutions to outstanding challenges or obstacles faced by agribusinesses.

The Best Five agripreneurs from each of the SAY implementation regions will receive financial support to the tune of:

  • 1st: UGX 10 million
  • 2nd: UGX 8 million
  • 3rd: UGX 6 million
  • 4th: UGX 4 million
  • 5th: UGX 2 million

This grant shall be both in cash and in-kind in form of equipment and asset support based on the business needs. Aspecial award category of best female youth agripreneurs per region will be included.

An additional category of Best Female Youth Agripreneurs per region will be awarded as follows:

  • Winner: UGX 5 million
  • 1st runner up: UGX 3 million
  • 2nd runner up: UGX 2 million

All eight winners will receive tailored business development support and linkage to networks and platforms. Which will include participation in a three-day Agribusiness Boot Camp:

Agribusiness Boot Camp is an opportunity for the selected youth to get in touch with agribusiness experts to assist them to polish their business ideas and review their business plans.

Am I eligible?

Applications will be received from youth either as individuals or as joint ventures (investment clubs or youth groups).

Criteria for individual applicants (youth agripreneurs)

  • Should be 18-30 years of age by the date of submission to the competition. Youth required to present a valid National ID as proof of nationality or any identification document.
  • Must be a rightful owner or co-founder of the business presented and should be involved fulltime in the management of the day-to-day operations and leadership of the agribusiness enterprise.
  • Must have been in the business for (at least) the last six months as at July 31, 2022.
  • Must be willing and ready to commit own resources as cost-share to achieve the common goals of the agripreneurship.
  • Must be willing to stay clear of partisan political activities during the course of engagement.
  • Be engaged in any of the following: horticulture, banana, dairy, coffee, food processing, piggery, poultry, apiary, fish, mushroom and support services along the value chains such as input services, extension services, waste management or recycling, marketing, food retail, ICT solutions for agribusiness, distribution or logistics and climate smart agriculture.
  • Have a business plan or business model canvas and keep records.
  • The business should have potential to grow and individual should be willing to work with other youth.
  • Must be located in the following districts:
    • Western Uganda districts of Mbarara, Ibanda, Kabale, Rubanda, Bushenyi, Kazo, Isingiro and Kiruhura and districts in the peripheral (Rwampara, Rukiga).
    • Northern Uganda districts of Lamwo, Agago, Lira, Kole, Gulu, Amuru and Oyam.
    • Central Uganda districts of Mityana, Mukono, Wakiso, Kampala.
    • Eastern districts of Mbale, Iganga including Bugweri, Kamuli, Soroti and Kapchorwa.

Criteria for agribusiness joint venture applicants:

  • Venture must be at least 75% owned by youth aged 18-30 years. Owners required to present valid National ID as proof of nationality or any identification document.
  • Venture must have been in existence for (at least) the last six months as at July 31, 2022.
  • Must be designed and operating as a for-profit business earning revenue from its operations. Youth initiatives designed as NGOs, CBOs or other forms of organizations are non-eligible to apply.
  • Registered or possess a registered/reserved business name or owners willing to formally register the business. Business should have a dedicated bank account or show willingness to open one.
  • Have a clear physical address with business plan or business model canvas and keep records.
  • Must be based in the following districts:
    • Western Uganda districts of Mbarara, Ibanda, Kabale, Rubanda, Bushenyi Kazo, Isingiro and Kiruhura and districts in the peripheral (Rwampara, Rukiga).
    • Northern Uganda districts of Lamwo, Agago, Lira, Kole, Gulu, Amuru and Oyam.
    • Central Uganda districts of Mityana, Mukono, Wakiso, Kampala.
    • Eastern districts of Mbale, Iganga including Bugweri, Kamuli, Soroti and Kapchorwa.
  • Operating in targeted value chains of horticulture, banana, dairy, coffee, food processing, piggery, poultry, apiary, fish, mushroom and support services along the value chains such as input services, extension services, agro‐processing, postharvest handling, value addition waste management or recycling, marketing, food retail, ICT solutions for agribusiness, distribution or logistics and climate smart agriculture.
  • Businesses that demonstrate commercial viability (potential to scale), innovation and great market potential will be highly prioritized.
  • Demonstrate social inclusion (engage other youth including female) and environmental impact (environmentally sustainable).

How can I Apply?

  1. You should meet the eligibility criteria.
  2. Download the application form, fill the document with the required information and Business Model Canvas.
  3. Submission of application:

Applications should reach us not later than 23:59 hours (Ugandan time), Friday 19th August, 2022.

  1. Note that applications submitted after the deadline shall not be considered.
  2. Female agripreneurs or female-led ventures who meet the eligibility criteria are highly encouraged to apply.
  3. Shortlisted applicants will be contacted through the same email used for submission of application.

How will AVSI Foundation select and announce the winners?

  • Applications will be evaluated by selected AVSI Foundation staff with expertise in agribusiness, using a set of criteria. This process will be conducted with the highest level of fairness, professionalism, and integrity.
  • Applicants will be shortlisted and invited by email to participate in a business pitch competition.
  • The selected participants will pitch their business ideas at a competitive Business Pitch event where five agribusinesses will be selected for financial support. The female youth agripreneurs will be identified from the general pool of shortlisted applicants per region.
  • At the pitching stage, each competitor will be allotted time to present their businesses to a panel of judges. This will be followed by a question-and-answer session in which judges will seek to understand the business. The judges will score the businesses against a set criterion to select the best five businesses/agripreneurs for funding.

This process is free of charge. No monetary or any form of consideration should be made by an applicant at any stage of the Challenge Fund process. AVSI Foundation upholds transparency. For cases of fraud, report to 0800 20 30 30.