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CHALLENGES IN THE DISBURSEMENT OF THE YOUTH ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT FUND: A CASE OF MOMBASA COUNTY, KENYA


Harrison M. Gachuru

Student, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Kenya

Dr. Fred M. Mwirigi (PhD)

Lecturer, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Kenya


ABSTRACT

Kenya’s population is largely youthful. Indeed, according to the Kenya national youth policies, Kenyans under 30 years of age constitute 75% of the population, forming a massive human resource. Despite their numeric strength, the youth have been marginalized at all levels of decision making and access to economic opportunities (NPI, 2008).  Consequentially, the youth face enormous challenges that include unemployment. It is because of these challenges that the youth enterprise development fund was created in 2006 with the sole purpose of reducing unemployed among the youth through the provision of a revolving fund to provide cheap loans to the youth. This paper analyzes the challenges in the disbursement of the youth enterprise development fund, Kenya. A sample of 91 youth participated in the study through stratified random sampling.  Two youth officers, two youth fund officials and two micro – finance experts also participated in the study. Questionnaires were used to obtain data. Results of the findings indicate that the youth enterprise development fund is yet to make a significant impact. The attitude of the youth towards loans is poor and their knowledge level on the youth fund is low. Other major challenges identified were delay in loan processing, culture of handouts and lack of initiative on the part of the youth. Group loans were also found not to be viable owing to the fact that it is very difficult to raise a group of 12 youth who can work harmoniously in a joint business. From the findings, there is need to review the lending policy and to sensitize the youth so they can fully appreciate the ability of the youth fund in uplifting their standard of living.


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