During the week, entrepreneurs were acknowledged, informed, inspired and encouraged to use their creativity to contribute meaningfully to the business sector. Nine events were hosted at the Innovation Village and included the training of youth to develop mobile applications that can solve social issues faced by communities. The group will, in turn, pass on their newly acquired pedagogical skills and knowledge to other young people nationwide. For this training, the Mobile Lab partnered with the UNESCO Youth Mobile Initiative, a collaborative event of the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service.
The programme also included the announcement of the Top Six winning companies of the second Sanlam Namibia Innovation Works out of the 80 that participated. The venture was launched in 2014 to provide funding for small-scale projects at the early stage and to address key issues in innovation.
Bernice Karuhumba, Manager of Entrepreneur-ship and Incubation at NBII, applauded the initiative and said: “This programme builds the winners’ entrepreneurial skills by them undergoing mentorship facilitated by the NBII for a period of nine months. This is in addition to receiving much-needed financial assistance of N$20 000 for each beneficiary to use in their operations.”
The Entrepreneurship and Incubation section also hosted the Business Model Development Atelier which attracted more than 30 participants. Five business models that address sanitation challenges were developed at this workshop.
The week included the Third Innovation Circle workshop that was held under the theme: “Intellectual Property Rights as a Catalyst for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.” The Innovation Circle is formed around a peer group of key players in the national innovation system. The group aims to share innovation successes and challenges and discuss solutions to the challenges.
Since its founding in 2001 in Canada, people in over 50 countries, from the business, education, private and public sectors, have celebrated the WCIW annually.