Organisation: IDEA for Africa
Works with: Youth Entrepreneurs
This month, we feature our member, IDEA for Africa. We spoke to the Country Director, Isabelle Byusa to find out more about what they do.
IDEA for Africa stands for Inspiring Development through Entrepreneurship and Action. The organization provides a platform to help establish, foster, and support an entrepreneurial mindset and spirit in Sub-Saharan Africa. Their two main focus areas are:
Entrepreneurship education among youth (particularly in secondary schools):IDEA for Africa leverages key relationships with local agents, schools, universities, companies and government organizations, building upon 15-years of best practices and programming to educate and support young entrepreneurs and startup organizations in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Global Entrepreneurship Week: Every November countries all over the world celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week. IDEA for Africa was Rwanda’s host for Global Entrepreneurship Week in 2015 (www.gewrwanda.com). Last year, Global Entrepreneurship Week introduced numerous events, competitions and seminars all over Kigali and Rwanda. Impact Hub Kigali was one of the partners and hosted some activities in the space, including a plenary discussion with the Mayor of the City of Kigali and local government authorities to talk about how local government could become enablers of private sector development.
Some of the organization’s highlights from 2015;
- GEW: The week-long celebration, which brought together a number of youth, entrepreneurs, artists, policy makers, and civil society leaders from the Rwandan community to stimulate the entrepreneurial spirit in Rwanda and connect all stakeholders within the entrepreneurship ecosystem.
- Entrepreneurship Workshop:
Targeted to over 100 top performing students in Senior 4 and Senior 5 across the country. The workshop was held in Byimana School of Sciences in the Southern Province. IDEA for Africa partnered with Wheaton College from Massachusetts, which brought a team of students and faculty from the college to conduct a Wheaton Innovation Leadership Laboratory (WILL) for the students.
This year, IDEA for Africa is working to coordinate the activities for the highly-visible Global Entrepreneurship Week celebration in Rwanda and to work with government leaders, teachers and students on promoting and improving entrepreneurship as a discipline in secondary schools. They mainly assist entrepreneurs in the startup phase of their entrepreneurial ventures: helping them identify areas of opportunity and how to take action on those opportunities. High schools and universities in Rwanda have a strong desire to promote entrepreneurship among their students, and IDEA for Africa is focused on helping them increase their capacity and effectiveness.
On what made the organization join Impact Hub Kigali, Isabelle says that the community was what attracted her. Joining Impact Hub has allowed her to plug into events happening in the social impact space, widened her connections, and enabled her to learn best practices from similar start-ups. She adds that Impact Hub has been a great place to work because of the organic relationships that have sprouted from sitting next to a graphic designer, a tech education specialist, or a public relations expert!
“Anyone who walks into IH is someone who one can potentially partner with. The Hub and some members were a great partners in realizing their flagship event – Global Entrepreneurship Week Rwanda this year- which was a success!”
Apart from being the director of IDEA for Africa, Isabelle is also a Zumba instructor! She teaches 3 times a week at Waka Fitness Gym and The Manor Hotel. For more details on this, visit her Facebook page; Zumba Kigali.