As part of its commitment to the growth of Nigeria’s agricultural sector, British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation BATNF, has launched a N5 million Farmers for the Future (F4F) grant, aimed at empowering young Nigerians with funds needed to establish their foothold in the sector.
This initiative, according to the organisation, is to further stir and promote interest in agriculture among the youths as well as help to develop their creative ideas to successful and sustainable agribusiness enterprises.
The grant scheme takes a form of annual competition, being sponsored by the foundation, for final year students of agriculture in Nigerian tertiary institutions and recent graduates in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
According to the foundation, eligible candidates are expected to develop creative agribusiness proposals and submit there application on BATNF wealth is here website.
Managing Director of the foundation, Abimbola Okoya, disclosed further that at the end of the contest, the best 10 would present their ideas in an interview with the Project Management Committee and the best three, would be presented to the public at an award ceremony.
He explained: “The winners will be provided with technical and financial support to establish their agricultural enterprises after their National Youth Service.
The competition will be held annually for a predetermined time.
“However, each group/team should not exceed three members, and each member is mandated to meet the eligibility criteria. Individuals that are willing to partake in long-term agricultural career and who have measurable experience in agribusiness are also qualified for the competition”, she said.
The overall winner will get a star prize of N5 million, while the second prize goes for a maximum of 1.5 million and the third prize winner would be offered a maximum of 1 million.
In addition to the prize, Okoya said the scheme will provide technical support to establish an agribusiness enterprise.
“It will also render support to participate in capacity building programmes such as: boot camp/internship programme; mentorship programme with an established agripreneur. Winners will also enjoy automatic membership of the F4F alumni network; agriculture training programmes and attendance of agricultural forums,” she informed.