BLAZE by Safaricom recently hosted the first Be Your Own Boss (BYOB) Summit in the Rift Region at The University of Kabianga in Kericho County. The summit saw over 2,500 youth from the region and its environs engage and learn from BLAZE partners and mentors.

The summit comes three weeks after the conclusion of Coast region summits which were preceded by engagements in the Western Region. So far over 13,000 youth have been engaged in summits in Kakamega, Kisii, Kisumu, Mariakani, Kilifi and Mombasa.

“We have been in the Western and Coast regions and the turnout has been great. The e-sports tournament has been an exciting addition to the summits and we believe we have identified yet another passion point for Kenyan youth that is unconventional and has great potential,” said Michael Joseph, Safaricom CEO.

The Rift Regional engagement will culminate in the BLAZE E-Sports Tournament Regional Finals and a creation camp where the top 3 entrepreneurs in 8 categories will win Ksh. 50,000, Ksh. 30,000 and Ksh. 20,000 respectively, totaling to Ksh. 800,000.

Compared to last year when BYOB had only three summits, the engagement program has been expanded both at grassroots level and via BLAZE Link, an e-learning aggregator, to reach more young Kenyans this year.

BLAZE BYOB features youth mentorship summits and creation camps all focused on empowering Kenyan youth to achieve success by providing valuable information, skills and networking opportunities in a variety of fields including: creative arts, fashion, film and photography, music, agriculture, sales and production and sports.

Like in the previous editions, attendees interacted with local mentors who are industry experts through interest-specific pods where they went through workshops and learnt from the mentor’s experience.

The Kericho Edition featured mentors such as Caleb Karuga (Agripreneur), Catherine Kamau (Actress), Brian Diang’a (Professional gamer) and Naiboi (Musician), among others.

Besides the mentors, BLAZE has partnered with Google, IBM and Wezesha to provide a mix of content, training and employment opportunities to BLAZE subscribers who attend the summits.

BLAZE is a sub-brand of Safaricom and was created to give youth aged 26 years and below products, services and benefits tailored specifically to meet their everyday needs.