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Monday, April 10, 2017

Vacancy at Cuso International

Cuso International is the Canadian Executing Agency of the five-year (February 2014-March 31st 2019) Youth Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Access and Development (YouLead) project in Cross River State (CRS), Nigeria. The Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA, Canada) is an implementing partner along with Nigerian partners. The project is currently in its third year of implementation in all the Eighteen (18) Local Government Areas (LGA’s) in Cross River State.

Cuso International is seeking a short-term consultancy (6 months) for a Business Development Assistant (BDA) for the YouLead Project. Working from our Ogoja Satellite Office, the BDA will be covering Local Government Areas in the Northern/Central Senatorial Districts of the State.

Business Development Assistant (Consultancy)

  • Job TypeFull Time  
  • QualificationBA/BSc/HND  
  • LocationCross River
  • Job FieldConsultancy   Sales / Marketing / Business Development  
 Reporting to the Business Development Officer (BDO), the BDA will be working closely with the National Volunteers (NYSC Volunteers, Youth Advisory Committee members and Community Volunteers) on the provision of technical and other forms of support to YouLead beneficiaries with new and existing businesses on market systems development approach and advice on making market work for the poor.

The consultancy is part of the implementation of the Entrepreneurship Programme of the YouLead project targeted at empowering young women and men in Cross River State to become skilled and specialist entrepreneurs in their chosen products or services in the Natural Resource areas of Agriculture, Aquaculture, Forestry (non-timber forest products), Renewable Energy and other emerging sectors with special emphasis on Gender and Environment.

YouLead Project 2.1 Project Summary: YouLead is a capacity building project promoting female and male youth employment and sustainable economic growth in Cross River State by developing and supporting appropriately trained and skilled entrepreneurs and workers, and promoting the appropriate policies, regulations and enabling environment for this to occur in a gender-responsive, sustainable and market driven manner. YouLead will provide technical assistance, using Canadian and in-country professionals, and working with local partners (government policy makers, business and financial services providers, youth resource centers and training organizations) to support natural resource value chains, help provide access to markets, and identify alternative and additional business opportunities for young women and men producers; build the capacity of micro and small enterprises to scale-up and ensure fair process and better working conditions for young women and men; and ensure that the appropriate policies and enabling environment is established. YouLead will also improve access to youth friendly financial services and products for young entrepreneurs. To that end, efforts will be made to ensure viable linkages between youth resource centers, technical training institutions, financial services providers, and the private sector.

2.2 Project Goal and Objectives: The overall goal of the project is to promote young women and men employment and entrepreneurship in natural resource sectors of agriculture, forestry, ecotourism, renewable energy and aquaculture in all 18 LGA’s, in line with the CRS government’s comprehensive vision to address high youth unemployment and rural-urban drift of young women and men in priority sectors which promote sustainable economic growth. The project aims to reduce youth unemployment by improving entrepreneurial and labour force capacities of young women and men, as well as the policies, regulations and enabling environment required to increase jobs and economic opportunities in natural resources. This will be achieved in two ways. First, through capacity building of partners and stakeholders (CRS MDAs; CSOs; BMO’s; PA’s, Training Organizations and Youth Resource Centres) to deliver skills training in entrepreneurship, as well as support to young women and men entrepreneurs through improved financial services and products. And second, through strengthening the policy framework, and collaboration on promoting a green economy. While CRS has comprehensive policies in natural resource management (NRM) and economic development, the project will play a coordinating role in bringing the responsible government authorities together to further articulate and implement a green economy approach to the creation of employment and economic growth that does not cause environmental pollution and degradation, or resource depletion.

The Project’s objectives include: i. To increase the equitable participation of young women and men in entrepreneurship and associated economic activities in the targeted natural resource sectors in CRS; and, ii. More responsive implementation of sustainable natural resources management in all 18 LGAs, State institutions, and civil society organizations in CRS.

The Project’s expected outcomes include: i. Increased capacity of civil society organizations, in collaboration with the private sector, to engage young women and men in gender-responsive entrepreneurship and associated economic activities in targeted natural resource sectors ii. Increased capacity of training organizations, and youth resource centres to provide skills in entrepreneurship and associated economic activities to young women and men iii. Improved capacity of local and state government institutions, in coordination with civil society organizations, communities and the private sector to develop sustainable natural resource policies and programs.

Background and Objective of the Consultancy
The Business Development Assistant (working with the Business Development Officer) will carry out Entrepreneurial and Value Chain Component Activities such as;
  • Support the mapping of YouLead beneficiaries with new and existing businesses, identify their key issues and provide market development support services to help them grow and succeed in their business
  • Working with the National Volunteers, carry out constant visit to beneficiary businesses, identify red flags and provide advisory support services or report such issues to the Business Development Officer for follow up
  • Support engagement of beneficiaries to identify/facilitate formation of youth cooperative societies, conduct needs assessment on these groups and provide organizational development/other support to cooperatives based on the result of capacity gap assessment conducted and other needs
  • Working with the Business Development Officer, Facilitate link for youths with local Investors, Input Suppliers, off takers and other players in and outside Cross River State
  • Support the identification of up takers and new market opportunities in and outside Cross River State vi. Working with the Financial Inclusion Team and as part of the Business Development Approach, provide required support for take active part in the credit sensitization and Grant activities as well as share information on access to credit.
  • Share relevant opportunities for funding and input and pass the information to beneficiaries
  • Where required, support the Review business plans of all beneficiaries recommended by Financial Inclusion team for access to credit and recommend those to be considered for access to credit/YEBSP as well as make recommendations on ways to improve beneficiary’s business plans Support the provision of Technical Assistance and Business advisory service to beneficiaries on Business planning, Record keeping, Business Advisory Services information, Loan repayment schedule and compliance records
  • Purpose and Scope of the Assignment The purpose of the exercise is to provide support to YouLead project beneficiaries (after their Entrepreneurship/Technical trainings) with new/existing Businesses on Mentoring, Planning, Start-up and management, and to provide Business Development support to these Entrepreneurs on a continuous basis
The Scope of Work The Scope of work is based on the objectives and the consultant(s) will develop Weekly and Monthly Activity work plans for execution during the period.

DELIVERABLES The expected end-product of this assignment will be:
  • Monthly reports showing the number of beneficiaries contacted, businesses supported, description of services provided
  • Completed BDS Forms in Individual beneficiary files (signed off by BDA and beneficiary) showing support provided per Beneficiary
  • Attendance sheets of activities carried out
  • Full Report of activities carried out highlighting efforts made, achievements and recommendations
  • A plan for measuring performance and impact of the new approach 4.1. Support for Business Start-up and Expansion The Consultant(s) will work with project beneficiaries who have undergone Entrepreneurship and/or Technical training and who wish to access credit from Financial Institutions to review their existing business plans and develop them into bankable ones.
4.2. Approach and Methodology The BDA’s will work in assigned LGA’s in the Northern and Central Senatorial districts of the State where Entrepreneurial training has been carried out.

Engagement with beneficiaries: The BDA’s will engage directly with beneficiaries on regular basis to document and provide BDS.

Technical Support: As part of the engagement, the consultant will also offer technical advice to the beneficiaries in running their businesses and will support Consultants/third party service providers engaged by the Project to carry out same.

Monthly Reports: Prepare and submit monthly reports of work done.
Method of Application
 Your application must be forwarded to with the competition number: BDA-2017-08 clearly marked as the subject title. Applications must be received by Wednesday, April 12, 2017, 11:59 pm Eastern Time. No late applications will be considered. CV must not be more than 4 pages in length maximum and covering letter must be 1-page long maximum.

To be considered, your résumé and cover letter should demonstrate that all of the qualifications are met. Applications that do not meet the above requirements will not be considered.

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