Thanks to a USD$250,000 grant from the Citi Foundation, Youth Business International was able to undertake research of relevance to youth entrepreneurship and support its member in Brazil, Aliança Empreendedora to expand the number of young people supported in Brazil and strengthen the network of service providers across the country.
The Citi Foundation grant supported the Generaçao Empreendedora project, which is part of YBI's Youth Entrepreneurship Programme (YEP), a regional programme covering 10 countries with the aim of supporting more than 60,000 vulnerable youth to start or grow their own businesses. The YEP was launched in 2013 and is supported by the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and Accenture, among others.
This initiative was set up as a way of addressing the high unemployment rates people are facing with in Brazil. According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), the recent economic crisis contributed to a record high unemployment rate of 13.2% in the first quarter of 2017. For this reason, entrepreneurship is seen by many young people in Brazil and across the region as a way of generating income. However, starting and sustaining a viable business is often difficult without adequate support.
Between August 2017 and August 2018, Generaçao Empreendedora achieved impressive results:
With the aim of strengthening the local eco-system of support that enables aspiring young entrepreneurs to access support, Aliança Empreendedora has:
As a central element of this programme was to produce evidence of what works in youth entrepreneurship, three research studies are currently under development that identify lessons learned and best practices in three specific approaches to youth entrepreneurship programmes:
Once finalised, these research studies will be shared throughout 2018 not only with the key stakeholders from the Latin America and the Caribbean region and the wider YBI network but also with any global organisations actively working in the youth entrepreneurship space.