The Ghana Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC) has graduated 20 vibrant entrepreneurs innovating solutions to climate change after 12 months of the incubation programme, to play their roles to strengthen the circular economy.
These entrepreneurs, making up GCIC Cohort 4 included 3 females and 17 males. They brought the total number of incubated businesses to 83 since inception of GCIC in 2016.
In a ceremony to usher them out last Thursday in Accra, Executive Director of GCIC, Ruka Sanusi, urged graduands to put in hard work and to be persistent in order to thrive in the face difficulties, if they sought to accomplish their dreams of success.
She encouraged resilience on the part of entrepreneurs. “As you graduate, it is important to remember this is where the tougher journey starts but it is important to keep focus and not give up,” she said.
In a motivating speech, Managing Director for ZeePay, Andrew Takyi-Appiah, inspired the entrepreneurs to stop at nothing to attain success. “You need to stand strong in the face of struggles. Winning is an attitude. It’s a function that sits in the mind”, he put out strongly.
He encouraged self-discipline and learning among entrepreneurs. In his experience, actively pursuing mentorship was a strong factor in entrepreneurial success. Graduands looked on, inspired, as he shared personal experiences in his own entrepreneurial journey and gave some pep-talk how to manoeuvre some challenges.
Valedictorian, Makafui Awuku, expressed gratitude for the impact which the Ghana Climate Innovation Centre incubation made in the lives of entrepreneurs through “leadership, the exposure, the technical support, peer exchange programs and financial support” which have enabled some businesses to start out strong and allowed others to expand.
He added that “the last 12 months have innovated the processes embedded in our projects and empowered our teams to become more effective and efficient. I would like to say thank you to the GCIC on behalf of all my colleagues and businesses, for the support that the businesses have all received within the last 12 months.
He pledged on behalf of his fellow entrepreneurs to work assiduously to bring more useful mitigating and adaptive innovations to climate change, to save the environment in Ghana and Africa.
The Ghana Climate Innovation Centre is a pioneering business incubator with a unique focus of developing SME ventures and entrepreneurs in Ghana’s ‘Green Economy’. Our mission is to develop and support an exceptional set of transformational ventures and entrepreneurs who are pioneering adaptive and mitigating solutions for climate change issues in Ghana.
GCIC is funded by a grant from the Governments of Denmark and the Netherlands through the World Bank, and is managed by a consortium led by Ashesi University, and including Ernst and Young, SNV Ghana and the United Nations University. The Consortium offers the perfect mix of experience and excellence in private sector development, climate change, entrepreneurship, education and training, and research and development know-how.
Through our work 1,129 Metric Tonnes of CO2 have been avoided. Over 200,000 households have access to products innovated by our entrepreneurs and 127 direct jobs have been created with 57 of them being women-led. More than $1.4 million has been received in grants by businesses – about $700,000 of which was disbursed through GCIC proof of concept grants.