UK issues Call for Proposals to create Jobs for Kenyan Youth

Deadline: 8 April 2019

Are you creating innovative solutions to youth unemployment? If yes, then apply for the Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund Business Innovation Challenge. The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is running a Business Innovation Challenge to competitively select up to 5 initiatives.

The fund is targeting initiatives that are post proof of concept, innovative, scalable, sustainable and that have demonstrated substantial impact. The applications will be evaluated by a team of reviewers who will select 10 finalists. The finalists will present their innovations to a team of judges who will then select up to 5 winners.

The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is a £5m, 4-year catalytic jobs fund that will, through a mix of technical assistance and grant support, test competitively selected innovations that have potential to unlock market constraints and
create jobs, including for the most vulnerable, e.g. people living with disability.

Funding Information

  • The Business Innovation Challenge Winners will receive grant funding and technical assistance of up to £100,000.
  • The exact size of the grant funding will be determined by DFID and disbursement will be milestone-based. In subsequent phases of the program, additional funding may be available based on learning from the pilot phase and on DFID’s approval.

Sector Focus

The fund will focus on three broad thematic areas:

  1. Agriculture/Manufacturing Sectors
    • The Fund will support innovations aimed at increasing international competitiveness. This thematic area would for example, support agribusiness/manufacturers to innovate, test new technologies and provide evidence to key state actors to address market distortions and unlock policy constraints holding back key sectors.
  2. Informal Sector
    1. The Fund will support innovations aimed at raising productivity and/or supporting shifts into the formal sector. Additionally, the Fund could also support solutions that use technology to link up clusters of informal microenterprises with formal firms (e.g. aggregators) and connect them to local or regional value chains.
  3. Marginalized Groups and Geographies
    • The Fund will support innovations aimed at catalyzing sustainable change in sectors and geographies that have the potential to create employment and increase incomes for disadvantaged groups, including women and people living with disabilities. This could include leveling the playing field for women-run businesses, e.g. around market positioning and access to finances.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is able to support an array of enterprises including early stage enterprises, mature enterprises testing new innovations, and non-profit organisations.
  • Government organisations, political parties and organisations that advocate, or espouse anti-democratic policies or illegal activities are not eligible to receive funding from the Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund.

Selection Criteria

    • Demonstrated ability to substantially create large numbers of new jobs, significantly improve job quality and/or contribute a relatively large increase in income generated by youth.
    Demonstrated viability of business model that does not require ongoing grant funding for long term sustainability.
    • Demonstrated evidence showing that the design, concept and business proposal has a clear and practical application.
    • Demonstrated potential for replicability of the business model across different geographies and market and/or expansion of existing model to serve more beneficiaries within the same context.
    • Demonstrated clear differentiation of product, process, technology or business model from current standard practice.
    • Demonstrated positive externality i.e. how the impact of the project will go beyond private commercial interests.

How to Apply

Applicants can apply via given website

For further information, please visit

  • Avatar Béatrice Ntutu says:

    We have à women group in one of thé marginalized group in Kenya, and are in need of this funding

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Béatrice Ntutu,

      For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

  • Avatar Peter Kedoki says:

    Are youth groups eligible? Interested

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Peter Kedoki,

      For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

  • Avatar Peter Mutua says:

    When is the deadline for selecting the finalist?

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Peter Mutua,

      For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

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