Kickstart Project organized 9 workshops during July – December 2022 with young entrepreneurs on financial literacy in Tirana, Korça, Tropoja, Elbasan, Shkoder, Berat, and Fier. Financial literacy workshops were organized for young entrepreneurs to develop their skills in self-employment, personal financial management, savings, careful borrowing, and access to finance from loans offered by MFIs. Access to finances through loans is offered to them during this training by MFIs and we also train them how to explore the market for loans, to compare different offers in order to choose the best offer with the lowest interest rate for them.
During those workshops, the project invited the loan officers and branch managers of 3 partner MFIs (BESA, NOA, and ASF) in order for them to see what the needs of micro-businesses are, their requests, to interact directly with young entrepreneurs and also to discuss their potential financing with loans. 180 young entrepreneurs (111 female) participated in these financial literacy workshops. The Kickstart project presents itself as an opportunity for young micro-entrepreneurs to develop their micro-businesses and to increase their turnover, net profit, and knowledge in financial literacy, access to finances, and business management skills.
These young, disadvantaged entrepreneurs with mostly marginalized and/or migration backgrounds lack education and skills as well as financial track records and collateral, which hamper their chances of accessing loans or other financial services, and more in general, to make their micro-business endeavours successful. The intervention of the Kickstart Project focuses mainly on young micro-entrepreneurs who start or have recently started their micro-business. The main aims are to offer them access to finances through loans from MFIs and to develop their knowledge and skills related to financial literacy (through dedicated trainings) and business management (through the business mentoring).