Impact investing in Africa has received an impressive boost as the MasterCard Foundation has announced a new $2 million funding for youth social innovators. The new investment is part of the foundation’s Scholars programme for young Africans.
The Mastercard Foundation has launched a new fund to enable young changemakers to launch new social ventures and community projects, creating economic opportunities. #fintech #financial #business #startups https://t.co/WacpxdfwC5 pic.twitter.com/kZLl316wXV
— Blue Train Marketing (@bluetrainagency) November 6, 2018
Established in 2006, MasterCard Foundation is a social enterprise launched by financial technology giant, MasterCard. The Foundation aims at transforming the lives of underprivileged persons in the Global South, particularly Africa. The foundation looks to advance learning and promote financial inclusion and has an endowment fund of around $2 billion.
The Scholars programme is one of the Foundation’s most important projects in Africa. Through a network of universities and other organisations, the Scholars programme supports the education of brilliant young Africans lacking finances for their education. And since its creation, the programme has trained thousands of young Africans through various programmes.
The establishment of the new $2 million fund goes a step further in supporting young Africans. The new fund aims to support promising social ventures which can unlock hidden economic potentials.
Thanks very much MasterCard foundation scholars at makerere for the spirit of givingback to the communities
Thanks for choosing Kampala school of physically handicapped. Disability aint inability #kuddos to u all @mcf_mak @MCFAlumniUg @nbstv @ntvuganda pic.twitter.com/9niozqnCkV
— President Banyankore On TL (@BushenyiBouy) November 3, 2018
“We are compelled by the leadership of African youth and the vision they hold for the continent’s future,” said Shona Bezanson, Associate Director of the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program.
According to the foundation, the funds will be disbursed over the next two years. And partner institutions and universities participating in the Scholars programme will receive the funds directly. However, there’s no information about the criteria that allow innovators receive funding.
Interestingly, this is not the first time the Scholars programme will blur the line between education and entrepreneurship.
Over the last two years, the foundation has provided funding and support to around 30 ventures. For instance, in Uganda, it supported the development of the Sparky Dehydrator, a venture that trains farmers on food drying techniques and sells food dryers to farmers.
We still await more information about the criteria for funding nevertheless.
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