Nowadays, youth face a more competitive and complex labor market to the extent that a degree does not guarantee the transition to employment. This is the case for university graduates but is exacerbated for vulnerable marginalized youth groups. UPHLS focuses on entrepreneurship opportunities to enable the recipients not only to acquire entrepreneurship skills but to encourage them to be entrepreneurs and to uplift their living conditions. The skills acquired enable the youth to assess the environment and identify business opportunities/ideas. They are able to determine the requirements to start up a business and begin to understand the importance of saving and reducing expenses. This concept is very challenging as there are many factors hindering its accessibility, such as youth who have neither the capital nor the collateral. The government of Rwanda is striving to create an environment conducive for entrepreneurship and to change the citizen mindsets from being job seekers to job creators and UPHLS couldn’t agree more ! Through the STARTUP program, UPHLS has been contributing to the youth beneficiaries’ micro-businesses creation and growth. In the developing world, successful small businesses are the primary engines of job creation, income growth, and poverty reduction. For the last 3 years, 550 youth who graduated from technical skills have been given startup toolkits to create their own small workshops. Furthermore, 900 youth have been given supportive capital to start their own micro-businesses.

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