Tonga Orientation Event for eight young “Greenpreneurs” selected for the 2022 Pacific Green Entrepreneurs Network (PGEN) incubator program.
Wednesday, 21st September 2022 Nuku'alofa: Eight young Tongan men and women “Greenpreneurs” and their green enterprises have been selected to join the 2022 Pacific Green Entrepreneurs Network (PGEN) incubator program.
Successful entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to participate in a business plan competition to secure grant seed funding of USD$5,000 to help them grow their green business ideas and enterprises.
This year, as the local implementing partner, TYEE will co-facilitate the full PGEN incubator program in Tonga for the first time. The Tonga Orientation Event, which marked the beginning of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) program, was held at the Tonga Youth Employment & Entrepreneurship Inc. (TYEE) Youth Career Centre, in Mataika, Tongatapu.
Visiting Tonga for the first time was the GGGI Director General, Dr. Frank Rijsberman, accompanied by GGGI Regional Director, Ms. Katerina Syngellakis, and the GGGI Team in Tonga - Will Rolston and Lano Fonua. The GGGI team was welcomed by TYEE director, Lusia Jones, who facilitates the program in Tonga.
In his remarks, Dr. Rijsberman stated that he started the Greenpreneurs program and GGGI to give young people a chance to start their green businesses and to provide the necessary tools for establishing a business.
“One important gap that a program like this can fill, is giving the chance to people with big ideas, specific space and plans but not necessarily the financial skills or the skills to run a business,” he said.
The network aims to support green and inclusive job growth by supporting entrepreneurs (particularly women and youth) to develop their green and sustainable businesses, whose business models include solutions aimed at contributing to their country’s climate and sustainable development goals in six Pacific Island countries - Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu.
The incubator program targets existing innovative early-stage green micro, small, and medium-enterprises (MSMEs) with demonstrated growth potential that are still in pursuit of a scalable and repeatable business model through localised virtual and physical training and courses, a mentorship program, in-person events, and networking opportunities.
In Tonga the eight selected applicants and their businesses are:
The Honourable Minister for Internal Affairs and Houma Council Chairman, Lord Vaea also attended the event. In his remarks, the Honourable Minister spoke of the importance of identifying effective ways to communicate these initiatives to communities and the general public. Moreover, he spoke of the importance of and informing the youth about climate change and what they can do to address or lessen its impacts.
The regional Pacific Green Entrepreneurs Network (PGEN) is a 3-year project funded by the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) and implemented by the Global Green Growth Institute.
Also attending the event were representatives from TYEE Board, management and staff, mentors, TYEE in-house youth business incubator and invited guests.
About Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI):
Based in Seoul, GGGI is an intergovernmental organization that supports governments of developing countries to transition to a model of economic growth that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. GGGI delivers programs in over 40 partner countries with technical support, capacity building, policy planning & implementation, and by helping to build a pipeline of bankable green investment projects. More on GGGI’s events, projects, and publications can be found on www.gggi.org. You can also follow GGGI on Twitter and join us on Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn.
About Tonga Youth Employment and Entrepreneurship Inc. (TYEE)
Established in 2014 as a registered non-governmental and not for profit youth support service organisation working with the aim to help young school-leavers in Tonga ages between 18 to 35 through skills development, employment services, entrepreneurship and mentorship support.
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