The International Finance Corporation (IFC) in partnership with the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) have launched a competition for local businesses in Turkana County.

The competition will allow the local businesses to demonstrate how their businesses can have sustainable development impact by creating opportunities and jobs in the Kakuma refugee camp.

Established businesses in any sector already operating in Turkana have been invited to apply for the Local Enterprise Development competition by submitting a business proposal and the amount of funding needed to bring the proposal to fruition.

The competition runs from September 14 to November 5, 2021 and is being conducted by the Kakuma Kalobeyei Challenge Fund (KKCF), a joint initiative of IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and AECF. The competition is supported by the Turkana County Government and UNHCR.

Turkana West is home to approximately 454,000 people, which includes roughly 200,000 refugees from various parts of Africa. Through this competition and other activities, IFC, AECF, the Turkana County government, and UNHCR are supporting private sector development and job creation in the region, and helping to empower and improve the lives of the host community and refugees.

“I am happy to see this joint initiative come to life and provide opportunities for the businesses of Turkana County. My government is keen to strengthen service delivery as well as create a favourable environment to conduct business. This competition affirms our continued commitment to exploring new opportunities and deploying innovative solutions to better address the financing needs of businesses and accelerate economic growth in Turkana,” said Turkana County Governor H.E. Hon. Josphat Nanok.

“This competition demonstrates IFC’s commitment to local businesses in Kenya and our strategy to help uplift host communities and refugees with private sector solutions,” said Jumoke Jagun-Dokunmu, IFC’s Regional Director for Eastern Africa. “IFC has identified untapped economic potential in the Kakuma refugee hosting area and the wider Turkana County region. We believe this potential can be realized with increased funding and solid advisory support.”

The competition winners will receive performance-based grants worth between Ksh. 1.5 million and Ksh. 5 million, and advisory support focused on business development, financial management, marketing, and publicity. Eligible companies must show that their business proposals are sustainable and assure development impact.

This is the third competition launched under KKCF by IFC and AECF to support private sector development in and around Kakuma and Kalobeyei. Previous competitions launched in late 2020 sought private businesses and social enterprises from anywhere in the world to establish or grow operations in the Kakuma and kalobeyei.

KKCF is supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development through KfW, the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and the European Union.