Uwezo Fund officials trained Nandi East Sub County residents who are expected to benefit from the fund on basic management, business development services and access to government procurement opportunities.
The fund which was launched in 2013 is a flagship programme for vision 2030 aimed at enabling persons living with disability, women and the youth access finances to promote businesses and enterprises at the constituency level in a bid to enhance economic growth.
This enables growth in businesses, enterprises as well as in achieving sustainable development goals such as eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, promoting gender equality and empowering women.
Speaking during the training, Nandi East Sub County youth officer Hosea Serem who is also the Uwezo Fund secretary in Nandi Hills constituency said 24 groups are expected to receive the fund with seven groups getting Sh 200,000 each whereas 17 groups will receive Sh 100,000 each totaling to Sh 3.6 million.
“There will be also facilitation on table banking as Uwezo Fund majorly targets table banking organisations. The seven groups who are at the expansion stage qualified to double the amount they received in the first lot because they were able to pay back the fund on time,” noted Serem, clarifying that the faster they pay back the quicker they graduate to the next level.
Serem noted that the aim of the government is to enable the groups have access to business opportunities that can help them meet their basic needs, create self-employment as well as create employment opportunities for others.
On his part Sub County Accountant, Stanley Kiptoo who was present during the training regretted that majority of the groups who received the fund in 2014 when it was first given out have not yet repaid the loan.
Kiptoo urged the groups that have qualified to ensure they invest the loan in income generating businesses to enable them pay back quickly and graduate to a higher amount.
“Out of the 122 groups that received Uwezo Funds in Nandi Hills on December 2014 only Seven groups managed to qualify for more funds meaning the others have not paid the loan,” explained the accountant.
“I know there are some people here who are planning to divide the cash once they receive the cheque. Let me warn you that once you fail to repay the loan you risk facing a penalty apart from not getting another uwezo loan,” he said.
During the training they were also taken through HIV/ AIDS and alcoholism in society and on how to go about such issues.
By Ruth Mainye