This blog was authored by Maren Peters and originally posted on Business Fights Poverty.
The Business Booster pilot project is a joint program of the Youth Employment Network (YEN), UNIDO and Endeva. The project seeks to pilot a holistic multi-stakeholder approach to increasing the earnings of youth-led cooperatives in Sierra Leone, by enabling them to access premium marketssuch as the US and/or the high value domestic marketwhere they would compete with foreign imports. In so doing, the project will not only increase the revenues of young low-income farmers’ but also test an innovative approach that can be scaled up and help smallholder farmers and producers in a range of contexts tap into premium markets.
At the center of the Business Booster approach is the One Stop Shop. This will be a local organization that will serve as a central player and link food processing companies and/or smallholder farmers to opportunities in premium markets both locally and abroad. It will be serve as an interface for farmers and producers to receive the support they need in key areas such as product quality, marketing and access to markets.
The objective of the project is to pilot the approach of the Business Booster. This approach seeks to support the commercialization of agro processing enterprises by enabling the targeted cooperatives to access premium markets. In testing the Business Booster approach the project seeks to increase the income of 100 young farmers and producers in Sierra Leone.